Released in the UK on 7 January, The King’s Speech looks primed to be a runaway hit. Surfing a wave of critical acclaim, it has proved that the British biopic is alive and well – and is a fitting reminder of what our home-grown talent is capable of. For Firth, it’s a well-drawn character piece that never takes the easy route.
“He didn’t overcome it,” the actor says of Bertie’s stammer. “And I don’t think the film shows him overcoming it. I think it shows him having an arrangement with it. Where he’s not going to let it stop him from doing his job. You know, that last speech you still see him fighting. He fights for every word. The Queen, Churchill and the rest are on the edge of their seat 'til the end. So, he overcomes the debilitating fear of it – but he doesn’t overcome the fact that he’ll always have the obstacle.”