W.M. Thackeray

Anti-Heroes: A BBC Radio Drama Collection

Anti-Heroes: A BBC Radio Drama Collection

Five Full-Cast Dramatisations Including Macbeth, Emma & The Great Gatsby


BBC radio dramatisations of classic novels centred around engaging anti-heroes who dominate high society

Ambitious. Ruthless. Unprincipled. With their blurred morals and relatable imperfections, it’s no wonder we find anti-heroes so appealing and fascinating. Featuring a mixture of male and female anti-heroes across England, Scotland, France and New York, these fantastic adaptations of five of the best-known and best-loved classics of literature follow some of these flawed, nuanced characters as they steal the spotlight and make their presence known.

Macbeth Scottish general Macbeth’s life is changed when he encounters three witches who predict that he will become the king of Scotland. Encouraged by his forceful wife, he proceeds to fulfil the prophecy, but descends into madness and tyranny... This thrilling production of William Shakespeare's dark tragedy about ambition for power stars Neil Dudgeon and Emma Fielding.

The Count of Monte Cristo – Marseilles, 1815. Nineteen-year-old seaman Edmond Dantès is engaged to the beautiful Mercédès and about to be promoted to Captain. But when three acquaintances betray him, he is condemned to 14 years of solitary confinement in the Chateau D'If. Escaping the notorious prison, Dantès plots his enemies’ destruction… Iain Glen stars in Alexandre Dumas’s swashbuckling tale of revenge.

Emma – Handsome, clever and rich, Emma Woodhouse is so blessed by life that she declares she will never marry. However, she is determined to find the right match for her new friend Harriet Smith. Eve Best stars in this adaptation of Jane Austen's sparkling comedy of young love and romantic meddling.

Vanity Fair – Thackeray's deliciously ironic tale of passion and ambition, set against the backdrop of the Napoleonic Wars, follows the fortunes of penniless, social-climbing Becky Sharp and her wealthy, sweet-natured best friend, Amelia Sedley. Starring Stephen Fry as the Narrator, with Emma Fielding as Becky, Katy Cavanagh as Amelia and Toby Jones as Jos.

The Great Gatsby – Arriving in Long Island, Nick Carraway is reacquainted with his distant cousin, Daisy Buchanan, and falls in with her wealthy crowd. His neighbour, self-made millionaire Jay Gatsby, is the man who has everything – but one thing will always be out of his reach... A portrait of the Jazz Age in all of its decadence and excess, this dramatisation of F. Scott Fitzgerald's seminal novel stars Bryan Dick and Andrew Scott.



Written by William Shakespeare

Directed by Marc Beeby

Composer: Timothy X Atack

Sound design by Colin Guthrie

First broadcast BBC Radio 3, 17 May 2015

The Count of Monte Cristo

Written by Alexandre Dumas

Adapted by Sebastian Baczkiewicz

Directed by Jeremy Mortimer and Sasha Yevtushenko

Music by David Tobin and Jeff Meegan

First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 25 November–16 December 2012


Written by Jane Austen

Dramatised by April de Angelis

Directed by Jonquil Panting

Music: Martin Souter and Sarah Stowe

First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 26 November–3 December 2000

Vanity Fair

Written by William Makepeace Thackeray

Dramatised by Stephen Wyatt

Produced by Claire Grove

First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 13 September–8 October 2004

The Great Gatsby

Written by F. Scott Fitzgerald

Dramatised by Robert Forrest

Directed by Gaynor MacFarlane

First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 6–13 May 2012

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