Brian Blessed pays tribute to Flash Gordon director Mike Hodges

Brian Blessed paid tribute to Mike Hodges who directed him in the film Flash Gordon.

Hodges, who also directed Get Carter and The long Good Fridaydied at the age of 90 on Saturday (December 17),

The news was announced by Mike Kaplan, a longtime friend of Hodges who produced his film I sleep when I’m dead in 2003.

Blessed appeared on BBC Radio 4 world one program in which he said Hodges had “a very strong personality and a bright, cheerful, brilliant imagination”.

He said that the 1980s Flash Gordon is “the only film apart from Henry V with Kenneth Branagh for running into the studio to start filming.”

Blessed, 86, described the filmmaker as having “a brilliant imagination,” adding, “His directing – mind-blowing. Great style, great perception. The film was a breath of fresh air.”

A seminal product of the era, Flash Gordon was a box office success in the UK and went on to develop considerable cult status around the world.

Hodges’ directorial debut Get Carterwas released in 1971 and starred another of his close friends, Sir Michael Caine.

Filmed on location in north-east England, the hyper-violent film stars Caine as a bike dealer, Jack, who travels to Newcastle-upon-Tyne to hunt down the men responsible for his brother’s murder.

The film received a limited theatrical re-release in May of that year.

Hodges found recognition again with his 2003 performance croupierwhich starred Clive Owen in his stellar role as an aspiring writer who takes a job as a dealer at a gambling den.

Brian Blessed in Flash Gordon

(Universal/Kobal/Shutterstock)

The British Film Institute (BFI) recognized Hodges as “versatile but with a unique style”.

“Hodges directed an actor whose warmth and generosity were legendary,” wrote the BFI’s Twitter account.

StudioCanal shared a picture of him on set filming Flash Gordon online and described him as a “one of a kind director, screenwriter, playwright and novelist”.

“We are deeply saddened by the news of Mike Hodges’ death,” the company wrote.

Additional reporting by agencies

https://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/films/news/brian-blessed-mike-hodges-death-b2249458.html Brian Blessed pays tribute to Flash Gordon director Mike Hodges

JOE HERNANDEZ

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