Eric and Ernie

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For the comics themselves, see Morecambe and Wise.
Eric and Ernie
Created by Piers Wenger,
Beth Willis,
Victoria Wood
(executive producers)
Written by Peter Bowker
Directed by Jonny Campbell
Starring Daniel Rigby
Bryan Dick
Victoria Wood
Reece Shearsmith
Jim Moir
Emer Kenny
Theme music composer Jessica Dannheisser (orchestrator)
Country of origin United Kingdom
Original language(s) English
Producer(s) Tim Bricknell
Running time 89 minutes
Original channel BBC Two
Original release 1 January 2011

Eric and Ernie is a 2011 television film produced by BBC Wales on the early career of the British comic double-act Morecambe and Wise. It completed production in 2010 and premiered on BBC Two on 1 January 2011. It was watched by 6.65 million viewers.


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 becomes a client of Hylton. At first glance the boys do not initially get on but Sadie sees a way to use their cross-talk and they form a bantering double act as 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 the formula that once worked and pushes Eric, now married to dancer Joan, into contacting Ernie, who is married to dancer Doreen. They decide to reform, on their own terms, into the act that would become one of the most successful performing duos ever in British comedy.


In credits order:

  • Victoria Wood as Sadie Bartholomew, Eric's mother
  • Daniel Rigby as Eric Morecambe
  • Bryan Dick as Ernie Wise
  • Jim Moir[1] as George Bartholomew, Eric's father
  • Reece Shearsmith as Harry Wiseman, Ernie's father
  • Emer Kenny as Joan Bartlett, later Eric's wife
  • Hannah Steele as Doreen Blythe, later Ernie's wife
  • Josh Benson as Little Ernie
  • Thomas Atkinson as Little Eric
  • Thomas Aldersley as Club MC
  • Ted Robbins as Jack Hylton
  • Jonah Lees as Young Eric
  • Harry McEntire as Young Ernie
  • Ria Jones as Boarding House Landlady
  • Pam Shaw as Lily
  • Esmé Bianco as Naked Showgirl
  • Andrew Greenough as Gordon Noval, Eric and Ernie's manager
  • Marcus Taylor as Stage Door Keeper #1
  • Lee Oakes as Stage Door Keeper #2
  • Fine Time Fontayne as Stage Door Keeper #3
  • Robert Willox as Doug, Glasgow Empire stage door keeper
  • Ian Ross-Henderson as Glasgow Empire Heckler
  • Julian Wadham as Ronnie Waldman
  • Alex Price as Nigel, BBC writer
  • Stephen Aintree as Vernon Arnold
  • Martin Walsh as Fishmonger
  • Angela Curran as Edna, Sadie's friend
  • Peter Gunn as Billy Crackers, warm-up comedian
  • Carolynne Good as Girl from Vasaria, in TV sketch
  • Clara Darcy as Theatre Usherette

Filming locations[edit]

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 real name

External links[edit]