Adelphi Films

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Adelphi Films Limited
Industry Movie
Founded 1939 (1939)
Founder Arthur Dent
Headquarters England
Owner Kate Lees

Adelphi Films Limited was a British film production company. With its sister company Advance, it produced over 30 films in the 1940s and 1950s and distributed many more. Adelphi linked Gainsborough Pictures and the raw “kitchen sink” dramas of the early 1960s.

Adelphi Films was founded in 1939 by Arthur Dent and is now managed by his granddaughter Kate Lees.[1]


Adelphi is an archive of British feature films which have not been seen for over 50 years. The Adelphi film collection comprises over 40 British films, stored for decades in a London suburban garage. Dating mainly from the 1940s and 1950s, the Adelphi film collection represents a classic period of British film-making, and features many British stars of the period, including James Mason, Max Bygraves, Spike Milligan, Diana Dors, Peter Sellers, Petula Clarke, Prunella Scales, Sid James, Wilson, Keppel and Betty and Rolf Harris’ screen debut. Dorothy Squires’ only film appearance was in Stars in Your Eyes which was scripted by Talbot Rothwell before he went on to find fame and fortune as the writer of the Carry On movies.

The collection holds two ‘lost’ Goons films made in 1953 with Peter Sellers, Spike Milligan, Harry Secombe, Bill Kerr and Alfred Marks (Penny Points to Paradise and Let's Go Crazy).[2] These had not been publicly viewed since they were made until they were released on DVD in August 2009.

Adelphi owns the copyright of the collection, (although several were released by other associated companies). In 2009, the archive donated 30 reels of film to the BFI National Archive for restoration.[3] Mainly shot in black and white, the films generally run between 80 and 90 minutes.

People involved[edit]

The list of players reads like a ‘who's-who’ of British acting and comedy talent of the period – Ronnie Corbett, Dennis Price, James Mason, Hermione Baddeley, Max Bygraves, Spike Milligan, Harry Secombe, Peter Sellers, Bill Kerr, Fred Emney, Cardew Robinson, Alfred Marks, Freddie Frinton, Ted Ray, Wilson, Keppel and Betty, Dora Bryan, Rachel Roberts, Tommy Trinder, Brian Rix, Diana Dors, Vera Day, Joan Hickson, Joan Sims, Sid James, Harry Fowler, John Gregson, David Tomlinson and Prunella Scales.


  1. ^ "The Adelphi Films story". Adelphi Films. Retrieved 14 April 2011. 
  2. ^ Brooks, Richard (June 14, 2009). "Lost Peter Sellers films on screen after 50-year intermission". The Sunday Times. 
  3. ^ "Outing for restored comedy films". BBC News. 15 June 2009. 

External links[edit]