Fantastic line-up of A list acting talent assemble to celebrate Richard Attenborough’s centenary at Chiswick Cinema

Richard Attenborough with Ben Kingsley on the set of Gandhi

Sir Ben Kingsley, Dame Penelope Wilton, Geraldine James, Kevin McNally and George Fenton share stories of working with Richard Attenborough

The late Richard Attenborough – actor, producer, director and one of Britain’s most prolific and successful film makers, was born 29 August 1923.

Chiswick Cinema has been celebrating his centenary this year with a retrospective programme of his films, co-organised with his son Michael, who lives in Chiswick.

For the big birthday they have assembled the most amazing A-list line up of acting talent to come and talk about his work – actors who worked with him on Gandhi, Cry Freedom and Shadowlands. Tickets have just gone on sale to the general public.

Sir Ben Kingsley  is a renowned actor with a prolific career spanning film, television, and theatre. Kingsley’s breakout hit came in 1982 when he starred in Gandhi, under Attenborough’s direction.

His portrayal was a triumph, earning him an Oscar for Best Actor and catapulting him to international fame. Although he had previous performed in lead roles in the theatre with the RSC, the landmark role presented to a wider audience Kingsley’s remarkable ability to fully immerse himself in a character, and his skill in capturing the essence with authenticity and depth.

Dame Penelope Wilton is a six time SAG award nominee and two time winner, known for her exceptional performances, including in Downton Abbey, Cry Freedom, Doctor Who, Shaun of the Dead and Calendar Girls.

Wilton’s on-screen presence is characterized by her poise, intelligence, and emotional depth. Her work in films such as The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel (2011) and Pride (2014) further underscore her versatility and knack for selecting roles that resonate with audiences.

Geraldine James M.B.E.  is a distinguished British actress and four time BAFTA-nominee, who has earned critical acclaim for her complex performances in notable works such as Gandhi, The Jewel in the Crown, Calendar Girls, Sherlock Holmes, and Anne with an E.

Like Ben Kingsley and Penelope Wilton, her dedication to her craft and the depth she brings to her characters have made her a hugely respected figure in her industry.

Kevin McNally is a British actor and writer (and Chiswick resident) who is best known for his brilliant performances in the Pirates of the Caribbean films, in which he portrays the fan-favourite Joshamee Gibbs, the loyal first-mate to Johnny Depp’s Captain Jack Sparrow.

McNally worked with Attenborough on Cry Freedom and also has appeared in De-Lovely, Downton Abbey, Turn: Washington’s Spies and Spooks.

George Fenton C.B.E. is a composer known for his prolific, skilful and influential compositions; nominated for five Oscars, sixteen BAFTAs and two Grammy’s. His notable works include Gandhi, The Fisher King, Dangerous Liaisons, Groundhog Day, and Anna and the King.

He has also accompanied acclaimed nature documentaries from the BBC, such as Blue Planet and Planet Earth for Sir David Attenborough. Fenton and Lord Attenborough shared a significant collaboration from eight Oscar winner Gandhi, through to  Cry Freedom, Shadowlands and In Love and War.

The Q&A with Sir Ben Kingsley, Dame Penelope Wilton, Geraldine James, Kevin McNally, George Fenton and Michael Attenborough will be on Saturday 16 September at 7pm at Chiswick Cinema.


Book tickets: Richard Attenborough centenary Q&A