Anthony Simmons

Anthony "Tony" Simmons (born 16 December 1922 in West Ham, London) is a British writer/film producer. He was associated with, though separate from, the Free Cinema movement; he said he was greatly influenced by Humphrey Jennings and by Michelangelo Antonioni’s movie Il Grido. Simmons claimed: "I wasn’t aiming to be a film director. I was a lawyer aiming to be a writer. But I felt that if I wrote films it was more immediate. It’s quicker. You haven’t got to spell out the words, you just make the image and tell the story." His documentary Sunday by the Sea (1951) won the Grand Prix at the Venice Film Festival. Four in the Morning (1965), his first feature film as director, did not gain a circuit release despite winning awards at several international film festivals, and a BAFTA award for Judi Dench as Most Promising Newcomer to Leading Film Roles. For several years Simmons worked in radio and making TV commercials until his second feature The Optimists of Nine Elms (1973) starring Peter Sellers. His 1977 feature movie Black Joy was entered into the 1977 Cannes Film Festival. His TV drama On Giant's Shoulders (1979) about Terry Wiles won an Emmy Award.



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