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Unmasking Our Leaders

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Michael Cockerell

Sunday 10th October 16:00 - 16:45 | Digital

Michael Cockerell is Britain’s most celebrated TV documentary-maker, with a string of awards for his witty and eye-opening profiles of our Prime Ministers and other top politicians. ‘You are no one in British politics until you’ve been Cockerelled,’ said one newspaper.

Drawing on his unique experience of having filmed and interviewed all of the past ten Prime Ministers, Cockerell reveals how Margaret Thatcher flirted with him on screen but attacked him by name in the Commons; how before the invasion of Iraq, Tony Blair told Cockerell he would willingly ‘pay the blood price’ demanded by President Bush over Iraq; how David Cameron admitted that he took from Cockerell’s profile of Enoch Powell the advice that you should always make a speech on a full bladder; and how Boris Johnson admitted he had doubts about his own ability to be Prime Minister.

Unmasking Our Leaders is written from a ringside seat about politics in the raw, filled with stories of the clash between principles and power, loyalty and intrigue, and how what starts with cheers almost invariably ends in tears.  It is also the story of a life working in political television, where tensions, rivalries and rackety love lives often mirror those in the Westminster bubble.

“Cockerell is a film-maker whose potent mix of guile and charm delivers crucial insights into the politicians of the day, no matter how accustomed they are to the camera.” The Guardian

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