When Three Isn't a Crowd: Tony Wants Hugh or Daniel to Act Him, but They Won't. Tony Wants George or Jamie to Talk to Him, but They Won't. Meanwhile, Peter and John Want Cherie to Play with Them, but She Won't

By Box, Red | New Statesman (1996), February 26, 2007 | Go to article overview

When Three Isn't a Crowd: Tony Wants Hugh or Daniel to Act Him, but They Won't. Tony Wants George or Jamie to Talk to Him, but They Won't. Meanwhile, Peter and John Want Cherie to Play with Them, but She Won't


Box, Red, New Statesman (1996)


Scene 1: Tony's office. Peter Morgan enters.

Tony: Hi, Peter. Great to see you. Now, I've had a brainwave about this docudrama. We'll call it Tony's Golden Twilight--Almost Too Much of a Good Thing.

Morgan: It's not "docudrama"--I write dramatised history.

Tony: Yeah, that's what I meant. Anyway, we'll fix the title later. Now I hope Michael Sheen isn't playing me again. I'm sick of him.

Morgan: He's brilliant.

Tony: But he's so pop-eyed and grovelly. And no way near handsome enough. Not that I'm vain or anything. It was Cherie who pointed that out. The handsome thing.

Morgan: So who do you want?

Tony [in a rush]: Hugh Grant, Jude Law, Ewan McGregor, Clive Owen or Daniel Craig. [Beat] Haven't really thought about it, though. Cherie suggested them.

Morgan: We'll see.

Tony: OK. So, feel free to explore the building. Talk to anyone. See you in a while.

Morgan [sits]: I'll stay and watch you for a bit.

Tony: Er ... Doing what exactly?

Morgan: Whatever you're doing.

Tony [laughs]: Well, I'm not doing anything, am I? Gordon's pretty much running the ... Hey, don't write that down. You're showing me in a favourable light, remember? In return for access. That was "the deal".

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

Morgan: I'm here to discover the truth.

Tony: But this is No 10. We're here to conceal ... Will you stop writing things down? I thought we trusted each other. [Beat] All right. Busy busy busy. [He pops out and re-enters with an aide.]

Aide: Afternoon.

Tony: This is Peter Morgan. Great guy. Wrote The Queen. He's doing a soap opera about my final year in power.

Morgan: Not a soap opera. It's dramatised history.

Tony: Exactly. History. [Turns to the aide] So, I want to speak to, er, let's see, George Bush, the Dalai Lama, Jamie Oliver, um, Nelson Mandela, Richard and Judy, and Vladimir Putin. In that order.

Aide: OK.

He exits. Ten minutes pass. Tony completes the Times quick crossword. Starts polishing his shoes. Leo comes in. They fold a piece of paper into a model plane.

Leo: I've made Concorde, haven't I, Daddy.

Tony: Looks more like the Eurofighter.

Leo throws the plane at Morgan. It nosedives into a waste-paper bin.

Tony: Definitely the Eurofighter. The aide re-enters.

Tony: Who's on the line?

Aide: They're all busy. Or asleep.

Tony: Oh come on. Not George Bush, too?

Aide: In a meeting.

Tony: Can't be. George'll drop anything to talk to me. He must be ill. Find out what's wrong and send him some flowers, pronto.

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