Ken Hughes

Biography: Ken Hughes entered the British film industry after World War II, and was first a scriptwriter and then a director of lively B-movies. He also wrote a lot of television in the 1950s. His aim as a film-maker was simply to be a bit less staid and reserved, a bit more punchy and exciting, than he perceived to be the norm in British films of that day. He had a success with the screenplay for an excellent thriller starring John Mills, "Town On Trial", won awards for his TV play "Sammy" (in which there is only one character - it was re-done on American TV as "Eddie", with Mickey Rooney), and then his directing assignments got rather grander, too. "The Trials Of Oscar Wilde" in 1960 won rave reviews and started him on big-budget movies, but thereafter his career was extremely uneven, with expensive flops like "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang" (1968) and "Cromwell" (1970) leading to long spells of unemployment. By the time of his death, long after his last films, he was something of a forgotten man.