Lot 506


Estimate: £1,000 - £1,500
Hammer price: £1,700
Bidding ended. Lot has been sold.


- A film script, the title page dated 14 April 1965, 122 pp. of mimeograph typescript on white and pale blue paper, 32 pages with minor amendments in Gilbert’s hand in either ballpoint pen or pencil, in black paper covers, with a mimeograph typescript Unit List, 1 June 1965, 3pp, and a mimeograph typescript ‘Shooting Schedule No. 3’, 31 May 1965, 12 pp, all bound in a red leather presentation folder, the cover gilt stamped LEWIS GILBERT, the blue leather inside cover gilt stamped SINK THE BISMARK; and a mimeograph typescript script amendment, 13 August 1965 with replacement dialogue between Alfie and Carla in scenes 53 and 54, 2pp.;

-A copy of the radio play by Bill Naughton, Alfie Elkins and his Little Life, produced by Bill Cleverdon for the BBC Third Programme, 7 January 1962, this copy ring bound in pale green card covers, printed in dark green with the play’s title and author and broadcast date and ITALIA PRIZE 1962 / BBC ENTRY, the 59 pages of typescript mimeograph text in both English and French, the front end paper inscribed in black felt pen For dear Lewis Gilbert in memory of Bill Naughton & happy days with Alfie (1965) with love from Erna Naughton, 20 October 1995 (After 30 years seeing Alfie at the Plaza I’ll be seeing it with you tonight – a little sentimental journey xx)

- Two theatre programmes for the play Alfie – one for the Mermaid Theatre, London, 1963, the other for the Nottingham Playhouse, 1964; and related material 


Footnote: Lewis Gilbert regarded Alfie as his ‘breakthrough’ film.  The chapter devoted to the film in his autobiography is entitled ‘The Film That Changed My Life’.  In it he recounts how it was his wife Hylda who, following a chance encounter at her hairdressers with the actress Margaret Courteney (who was appearing in Alfie at the Mermaid Theatre), went to see the play and immediately realised it would be a great vehicle for a film.  Gilbert saw the play on the strength of his wife’s recommendation and recalls…. the subject fascinated me….because Alfie was a new kind of hero….he had a cockiness and an energy that was mirrored in the real life of the 1960s….

 Alfie broke numerous box office records on its release and was lauded by the critics as a result the film shot Lewis Gilbert and his unknown lead Michael Caine to international stardom. Alfie was nominated for 5 Academy Awards including: Best Picture for Lewis Gilbert and Best Actor in a leading role for Michael Caine. It won 3 BAFTAs including Best British Actor for Michael Caine; and was nominated for 3 others including Best British Film for Lewis Gilbert. At Cannes Lewis Gilbert won the Jury Special Prize and was nominated for the Palm d’Or. The film also won 4 Golden Globes including Best Director for Lewis Gilbert and Best Actor for Michael Caine and was nominated for 3 others.

 In a recent interview for The Guardian  newspaper with Xan Brooks, 18 October 2021, Michael Caine’s remarked: “Alfie is probably the best film I ever made”.

Literature: GILBERT, Lewis All My Flashbacks The Autobiography of Lewis Gilbert, Sixty Years A Film Director, Reynolds & Hearn, London, 2010 

Bellmans is grateful to Wallace and Hodgson for their assistance with cataloguing the Lewis Gilbert Film Script and Production Archive.


Read more

Our website uses cookies, as almost all websites do, to help provide you with the best possible browsing experience.

Accept Read more