Eric and Ernie

Eric and Ernie is a 2011 television film produced by BBC Wales, based on the early career of the British comic double-act Morecambe and Wise. The production was completed in 2010 and premiered on BBC Two on 1 January 2011. It was watched by 6.65 million viewers. Since then, it has been repeated several times on Gold.

Eric and Ernie
Created byPiers Wenger,
Beth Willis,
Victoria Wood
(executive producers)
Written byPeter Bowker
Directed byJonny Campbell
StarringDaniel Rigby
Bryan Dick
Victoria Wood
Reece Shearsmith
Jim Moir
Emer Kenny
Hannah Steele
Theme music composerJessica Dannheisser (orchestrator)
Country of originUnited Kingdom
Original language(s)English
Producer(s)Tim Bricknell
Running time89 minutes
Original networkBBC Two
Original release1 January 2011


Several years before World War II, Ernie Wiseman, a precocious and confident child performer, is signed up by influential impresario Jack Hylton. In Morecambe, pushy stage mother, Sadie Bartholomew, drags her slightly reluctant son Eric, an eccentric dancer, from one audition to the next until he too is employed by Hylton. At first glance the boys do not initially get on but Sadie sees a way to use their cross-talk to form a bantering double act, originally known as Bartholomew and Wise. But as time goes on, Sadie comes to the conclusion that their name is stopping them from getting noticed, so after reading the local newspaper, The Morecambe Visitor, she suggests that they should change their name to Morecambe and Wise.

After war service they become successful on stage and on radio but their attempt to crack the new medium of television is a disaster because they have been forced to accept a script which will make their Northernness acceptable to Southern viewers. As a result, the duo go their own ways and split up. However, Sadie knows that their formula will work and pushes Eric, now married to dancer Joan, into contacting Ernie, who is married to dancer Doreen. They decide to reform, and to completely rewrite their own act that would become one of the most successful performing duos ever in British comedy.


In credits order:

Filming locations

Amongst the locations used for filming include:-


Daniel Rigby won the BAFTA TV Award for Best Actor at the 2011 BAFTAs for his performance as Eric Morecambe.


  1. Vic Reeves's real name
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