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Last Updated: Wednesday, 18 April 2007, 10:11 GMT 11:11 UK
Walters to play Whitehouse on BBC
Mary Whitehouse
Mrs Whitehouse fought to raise standards in the media for 30 years
Actress Julie Walters is to star as TV standards campaigner Mary Whitehouse in a drama for her chief target, the BBC.

Filth: The Mary Whitehouse Story will dramatise the campaigner's battle with BBC director general Sir Hugh Greene.

Their feud led to Mrs Whitehouse being banned from BBC premises from 1965 to 1976. Sir Hugh is reputed to have used her picture as a dartboard.

Harry Potter star Walters said she was "very excited" by the drama, which will be shown on BBC Two later this year.

Executive producer Leanne Klein said the film would be based on first-hand accounts of the "surprising and often very funny" story of Mrs Whitehouse's rise to fame.

'Doubt and dirt'

The public morals champion began her career with the Clean Up TV Campaign in 1964.

She complained vehemently of the increasing "blasphemy, bad language, violence and indecency" she saw on television, and became the first general secretary of the National Viewers and Listeners Association in 1965.

Her prime target was the BBC and its "propaganda of disbelief, doubt and dirt".

Sir Hugh Greene
Sir Hugh Greene was the BBC's director general from 1960-1969
Seen as a heroine of moral values by much of middle England, she was nonetheless derided in the media.

Sir Hugh Greene refused to meet her and ignored her campaign during his period as director general.

She once called him "the devil incarnate". He responded to her criticisms by commissioning a painting of her naked with five breasts to hang in his office.

"The clash of values between Mary and Hugh Carleton Greene is a battle of hearts and minds," said BBC drama commissioning editor Lucy Richer.

"This fantastic, revealing film brings to light the controversy that marked the launch of BBC Two, whose groundbreaking programmes so infuriated Mary Whitehouse."

Mrs Whitehouse died in 2001, aged 91.


SEE ALSO
Mary Whitehouse's memory lives on
08 May 04 |  West Midlands
Memorial held for Mary Whitehouse
10 Apr 02 |  Entertainment
Campaigner Mary Whitehouse dies
23 Nov 01 |  UK News
Whitehouse 'kept TV on its toes'
23 Nov 01 |  Entertainment

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