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Orwell classic in radio first

GEORGE Orwell's Nineteen Eighty-Four is to be dramatised by BBC radio for the first time –almost 70 years after the writer worked at Broadcasting House, which partly inspired his tale.

The author, who is to be celebrated in a season of programmes on Radio 4, based the book's torture area, Room 101, on a meeting room in the building that he remembered from his time at the BBC.

The adaptation of his novel will star Christopher Eccleston as main character Winston Smith and will be broadcast in two parts next month.

Nineteen Eighty-Four –published in 1949 – has been brought to life on numerous occasions, including a celebrated movie starring John Hurt, released the year it was actually set. It has also been a BBC TV series in 1954 and two years later a British movie starring Edmond O'Brien and Michael Redgrave.

The new dramatisation will begin on February 10.

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