Waterloo Road (film)

Waterloo Road is a 1945 British film directed by Sidney Gilliat and starring John Mills, Stewart Granger, and Alistair Sim. It is based on the Waterloo area of South London. According to the British Film Institute database, it is the third in an "unofficial trilogy" by Gilliat, preceded by Millions Like Us (1943) and Two Thousand Women (1944).[2]

Waterloo Road
Directed bySidney Gilliat
Produced byEdward Black
Written bySidney Gilliat
Story byVal Valentine
StarringJohn Mills
Stewart Granger
Joy Shelton
Jean Kent
Alastair Sim
CinematographyArthur Crabtree
Edited byAlfred Roome
Distributed byGeneral Film Distributors
Release date
  • 5 February 1945 (1945-02-05)
Running time
73 mins
CountryUnited Kingdom
Box office522,090 admissions (France)[1]


A soldier, Jim Colter (Mills), goes AWOL to return to south London to save his wife from the advances of Ted Purvis (Granger), a philandering conscription-dodger.



The film was originally known as Blue for Waterloo.[3]

Stewart Granger later said the film was one of his favourites as his role "was a heel, but a real character".[4] He says the film was made in ten days while he was also making Love Story. He was particularly proud of the fight scene with John Mills.[5]

Sidney Gilliat says he was taken off the film before it was finished. Production was stopped and there were still some exteriors to be shot. Ted Black had gone and the Ostrers put the film at the end of the dubbing schedule. However, Earl St John who was in charge of Odeon cinemas liked the film and got the dubbing done.[6]

Gilliat says the idea of using Alastair Sim's character as a commentator was his, though based on the original Val Valentine story. However, he thought the device "proved a bit of a mess".[6]


According to Kinematograph Weekly the film performed well at the British box office in 1945.[7]

See also


  1. Box office information for Stewart Granger films in France at Box Office Story
  2. BFI Database entry
  3. "Motion Picture Herald (via: Lantern: Search, Visualize & Explore the Media History Digital Library)". Motion Picture Herald; lantern.mediahist.org. November–December 1943. Retrieved 8 April 2017.
  4. GRANGER'S RANGE: At Home and Abroad With A Rising British Star By HOWARD THOMPSON. New York Times (1923-Current file) [New York, N.Y] 8 November 1953: X5.
  5. Brian MacFarlane, An Autobiography of British Cinema, Methuen 1997 p 230
  6. Brian MacFarlane, An Autobiography of British Cinema, Methuen 1997 p 225
  7. Robert Murphy, Realism and Tinsel: Cinema and Society in Britain 1939-48 2003 p 208
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