The Long and the Short and the Tall

By Willis Hall
Directed by Anthony Page
1959 UK Tour

  • Cast :
    Michael Caine . . . . . Pte Bamforth C. 'Bammo'
    Frank Finlay . . . . . Sgt. Mitchem R. 'Mitch'
    Timothy Harley . . . . . Pte Evans T. E.
    Harry Gwyn Davies . . . . . Cpl Johnstone, E
    Joe Brady . . . . . L/Cpl. Macleish, A. E.
    Johnny Arlan . . . . . Japanese Soldier
    David Sutton . . . . . Pte. Whitaker, S. 'Sammy'
    Roy Kinnear . . . . . Pte. Smith, P.

    UK Tour First Half 1959:
    Kings Theatre, Glasgow - Week 3rd August
    Grand Theatre, Leeds - Week 10th August
    Royal Court Theatre, Liverpool - Week 17th August
    Golders Green Hippodrome, London - Week 26th August
    Streatham Hill Theatre - Week 31st August

    The Long the Short and the Tall premiered at the Royal Court Theatre in London in January 1959; directed by Lindsay Anderson and starred Peter O'Toole and Robert Shaw. It was a success and transferred to the New Theatre in the West End. Michael Caine was O'Toole's understudy. Michael Caine took over the role for the UK tour as O'Toole was filming Laurence of Arabia.

    The tour was directed by Anthony Page who had been Anderson's assistant on the first production. Frank was in the first half of the UK tour (5 weeks).
    "We toured all over England, Scotland and Ireland and I learned so much, especially from a marvellous actor called Frank Finlay, who played the other male lead in the play. Frank never became a movie star so is not as widely known as he might be. However, when he played Iago to Laurence Olivier's Othello in the theatre, he almost stole the show from him - that's the calibre of actor he is.

    Michael Caine What's It All About P.146
    The tour was extended and some parts were recast, Michael Caine stayed on, John Colin took over as Sergeant 'Mitch' Mitchem and Terence Stamp joined as Whitaker.
    "I had played the Radio Operator in the play at the Theatre On The Green, Richmond, so I knew the words, so I got the job. It was my second job out of drama school".

    Terence Stamp - The Scotsman.