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The Tichborne Claimant


In 1866 one of the wealthiest young men in England disappears when sailing around the world. Ten years later, sightings of the presumed drowned Sir Roger Charles Doughty Tichborne, are made in South America and Australia.

A trusted black man servant, Bogle, is sent to Australia to identify the heir apparent.

After several years of fruitless searching, Bogle writes back to the Tichbornes in England informing them that their son is in fact probably dead. They inform Bogle that he may as well stay in Australia.

Desperate for a ticket home, Bogle decides to train an unlikely imposter, an overweight butcher with an uncanny resemblance to the missing heir, in the ways and manners of an English gentleman.

Back in England his eccentric mother recognises Bogle's trained gentleman immediately as her missing son, much to the horror of the rest of the family. And so begins one of the longest running court cases in English legal history, and a story which takes a remarkable turn as the imposter Bogle has unearthed suddenly begins to act and behave like the man he is supposed to be.

Is he Sir Roger or not? Based upon a true story.


Type of film
Running Time
100 mins
35mm Kodak
David Yates
Tom McCabe
Director of Photography
Peter Thwaites
Principal Cast
John Kani, Robert Pugh, Sir John Gielgud, Stephen Fry, Robert Hardy and Rachael Dowling
Screen Writer
Joe Fisher


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Last updated 26th November 2005

Production Company

The Bigger Picture Company
Ealing Studio
Ealing Green
London W5 5EP
Tel: 020 8758 8566
Fax: 020 8567 5475


as Production Company