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BBC confirms 'Mary Whitehouse' drama

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BBC Two has commissioned a new drama about renowned taste and decency campaigner Mary Whitehouse.

With Julie Walters in the cental role, Filth: The Mary Whitehouse Story will feature Whitehouse's battle against television, which included slating the BBC for allowing The Beatles to use the word "knickers" on TV in 1967.

Walters said: "I am very excited to be playing Mary Whitehouse, and to be looking at the time when she attacked the BBC and started to make her name."

Backed by her loyal husband Ernest, played by Alun Armstrong, Whitehouse led her "Clean-Up TV" campaign against BBC Director-General Hugh Carleton Greene, played by Hugh Bonneville.

Carleton Greene, who was on a mission to modernise television, responded to Whitehouse's campaign by commissioning a painting of a nude, five-breasted Mrs Whitehouse for his office.

Lucy Richer, commissioning editor, Independent Drama Commissioning, BBC, said: "This fantastic, revealing film brings to light the controversy that marked the launch of BBC Two, whose groundbreaking programmes so infuriated Mary Whitehouse. The clash of values between Mary and Hugh Carleton Greene is a battle of hearts and minds – an entertaining portrait of a time which shaped the TV we watch today."

Commissioned by Jane Tranter, BBC Controller, Fiction, the 90-minute film is made Who Do You Think You Are? producers, Wall to Wall. It will air later in 2007 on BBC Two.

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