In 1973 Ricky Tomilinson was imprisoned for unlawful assembly and conspiracy when picketing for support in Britain’s first National Building Strike a year earlier. During the course of Ricky’s sentence when he refused to conform, wear prison clothing, work and suffered on hunger strike he met a sympathetic and wise prison governor who introduced prisoner Tomlinson to Tressell’s great novel.
Ricky was an immediate devotee recognising conditions and work practices in the book that reflected his own experiences. He credits The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists with changing his life and helping give articulation to his thoughts.
Photo: Andy Hollingworth
‘Ragged’, written by Andrew Lynch, Produced and Directed by Johnny Vegas stars Ricky as he is now with Stephen Walters playing younger Ricky of the 1970’s. Chris Fulford takes on multi-rolls representing many establishment figures Ricky came up against in prison and Philip Jackson plays the understanding, life changing Governor.
The half hour drama for Sky Arts Playhouse is the first independent programme for Johnny Vegas’s company Woolyback Productions and will be broadcast on June 6th 2013 @ 9:30pm.
Johnny Vegas has directed an All-Star video for Billy Bragg’s ‘Handyman Blues’ single.
Featuring Kevin Eldon, Ricky Grover, Phill Jupitus, Stewart Lee, Neil Morrissey, Ross Noble, Johnny Vegas and Samuel West plus a cameo appearance from Billy Bragg and filmed in a wickes D.I.Y store!
Johnny Vegas has directed and appeared in a video for Billy Bragg’s new single ‘Handyman Blues’ (released July 15 on Cooking Vinyl) with an all-star cast of comedians and actors who are Billy Bragg fans. Johnny, a lifelong fan of Billy’s songs, recently sought out the ‘The Bard Of Barking’ for help with some music for a drama he was directing called ‘Ragged’, featuring Ricky Tomlinson. As a thank you, Johnny offered to make a video of the song he loved on Bragg’s new CD ‘Tooth & Nail’. In the song ‘Handyman Blues’, Billy laments that he is useless at DIY, but suggests that he is creative in other ways. The video, produced by Beverley Dixon of Woolyback Productions, was filmed at the Wickes D.I.Y. store in Uxbridge.
Johnny says, “It’s not every day that you get to direct a video for a genuine icon, especially one as respected and admired as Billy is”.