Gary Oldman, who plays Winston Churchill in Darkest Hour, and the film’s director, Joe Wright, visited the National Churchill Library and Center on November 4. They were in Washington for a private screening for Members of Congress and others the night before. The visit was arranged by Focus Features, the distributor of the film, and follows on the heels of the screening and Q&A with Mr. Wright on the first night of the recent International Churchill Conference in New York.
During their hour-long visit, Mr. Oldman and Mr. Wright received a private tour from NCLC Director Michael F. Bishop, whose review of Darkest Hour appears in this month’s Bulletin. The actor and director were particularly interested in the calendar engagement cards on which the prime minister’s wartime schedule was recorded and admired the other original artifacts and documents on display, including the wedding gifts that Clementine gave her husband. After their tour, they greeted students and other invited guests over coffee, and took photographs.
In brief remarks, Mr. Bishop commended Mr. Oldman for his performance and Mr. Wright for conjuring a gripping thriller out of the intense Cabinet debates of May 1940, and thanked them for inspiring a new generation to learn more about Churchill’s extraordinary historical importance.