Michael Cockerell

Political documentary maker

A ring-side seat for the major political events of the last 50 years

16th December 2021

Michael Cockerell has been described as “the Prime Minister of the political documentary.” His Emmy award-winning films have featured intimate conversations with the past 12 prime ministers, winning near-universal recognition for being the definitive account of their time in No 10. He has also produced captivating programmes taking viewers inside the Home Office, Foreign Office, HM Treasury and the House of Commons. In this in-depth interview, Michael reflects on his ring-side seat at the major political events of the last five decades, as well as the impressions he’s gained from his behind-the-scenes access to some of the most powerful people in the world; charts his journey covering Boris Johnson, starting with his famous 2013 interview which elicited the “if the ball came loose from the back of the scrum” quote which revealed his ambition; and recalls how at the height of the Falklands War, then-prime minister Margaret Thatcher lambasted his “odious” journalism in Parliament… only for history to prove him right – and confirm that the government did indeed mislead the public.

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