|Colin Firth||Richard Herncastle|
|John Castle||Uncle Nick|
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This seven-part British miniseries was based on J.B. Priestley's autobiographical novel, originally published in 1965. Colin Firth starred as Richard Herncastle, a young and impressionable Yorkshire lad who in 1913 signed on as assistant to his Uncle Nick (John Castle), a professional magician. During the next year or so, Richard toured with Nick throughout the provinces as part of an Empire Music Hall circuit performing troupe. His delightful and sometimes shocking experiences with his fellow vaudevillians (among them such long-forgotten acts as Dunffield's Dogs and the Musical Tiplows) came to an abrupt end when WWI was declared and Richard was called to the colors. Largely filmed at the old Burton Opera House, which actually did serve as a music hall in years gone by, Lost Empires was telecast by ITV in 1987.
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If you have read the original J.B. Priestleys' ''Lost Empires'', you will be delighted to see this finally on video. It is as close to the characters as is humanly possible and the choice of all actors was superb. This series will take you back in time to the old empire theatre and all its weird and wonderful characters. They are engrossing. It is disappointing when the story ends and you long for more. They dont make them like this anymore. The book is also my favorite from JB. I highly recommend it, and the book. Enjoy the ride!