The Photographer (1999) (TV)

Bill Nighy - Will Rushmore in The Photographer
Bill Nighy – Will Rushmore in The Photographer

The Photographer was a part of the BBC series People Like Us, a spoof fly-on-the-wall documentary series. Roy Mallard travels across the nation to interview a variety of subjects : ordinary folk, “people like us”.


Bill Nighy plays photographer Will Rushmore in The Photographer.

Roy Mallard is in Winchester to discover the ar tistic genius behind the work of photographer Will Rushmore (Bill Nighy). Unfortunately, Will’s talent behind the camera is equal to that of Roy’s.
According to Will, he gave up a safe job in town-planning to follow his lifelong ambition to be a top photographer.
According to his lodger Emma (Jessica Oyelowo),a young art student with whom he appears to have a more than the usual landlord/tenant relationship, Will was not content to settle for the predictable job/family/mortgage that is normal for a man of his age. In fact, 41 is not old at all and his Pierre Cardin underpants are not those of a middleaged guy. According to his ex-wife Ros,he is a sad loser who was fired from the council.
Roy learns some of the tricks of Will’s trade as he follows him around on a day that is anything but routine, whether it’s paying over the odds for a camera lens, doing a portrait of a warring family, or visiting a smart London gallery in the vain hope that his work will be exhibited. Even in the dark room, Roy is in awe of the artist at work, or he puts it,“The dark room is the confessional in the church of the photographer’s science.” This makes as much sense as anything Will has to say about his work.

People Like Us was the winner of the 1999/2000 Silver Rose of Montreux for Comedy.


See a clip of Bill Nighy as Will Rushmore

BBC : People Like Us
BBC’s People Like Us presskit (PDF file)



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