Overlook Press

Skip to Main Content »

Search Site

You're currently on:

Life and Work of Dennis Potter (Paperback)

More Views

The Life and Work of Dennis Potter (Paperback)

W. Stephen Gilbert

Available at:
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Indiebound

Be the first to review this product


ISBN 13: 978-1-58567-251-6
Trim Size:

Product Description

The first critical biography of the master of television theater whose brilliant "The Singing Detective" endures as an international cult sensation.

Dennis Potter redefined the standards for television playwriting. His remarkable career included "Pennies from Heaven," the inspiration for the movie starring Steve Martin or which Potter wrote the screenplay-and the brilliantly complex "The Singing Detective," one of the finest artistic achievements ever created for television. Television was the only form of communication that really meant anything to Potter, and in thirty original plays and nine serials, he reinvented the medium, so to speak, lavishing it with his tough intelligence, fierce artistic integrity and boundless creativity.

W. Stephen Gilbert brilliantly analyzes Potter's work, emphasizing the dramatic interplay between this brilliant, difficult man's life and the medium to which he was devoted. At the age of twenty-four, for instance, Potter was diagnosed with psoriatic arthopathy, a rare debilitating skin disease whose horrors he portrayed with biting black humor through his alter ego, the Michael Gambon character in "The Singing Detective." Weeks before his foretold death, he gave an astonishing television interview to Melvyn Bragg. Unforgettable for its honesty about life and work and death, the result was a gripping piece of television quintessential Dennis Potter. This is an essential book for anyone interested in television, film, or this courageous and fascinating man.

"W. Stephen Gilbert recalls the lacerating wit, passionate intelligence, and courage behind the television playwright responsible for "The Singing Detective" and "Pennies From Heaven"." Vanity Fair

"Gilbert gives ample evidence why the fame of this iconoclastic writer should reach beyond the cult status it currently enjoys." The Newark Star-Ledger

"A magnificent book." The Sunday Telegraph (London)

"A splendid biography of a complex, paradoxical and immensely courageous individual." The Spectator (London)

W. Stephen Gilbert lives in London. He is a television producer, critic and journalist who regularly contributes to The Independent, The Observer, and Time Out.

Product Tags

Add Your Tags:
Use spaces to separate tags. Use single quotes (') for phrases.
Download our catalogs
Winter 2019
Fall 2018
Summer 2018
Winter 2018
PG Wodehouse