Thursday 19 January 2017

Frost's Nixon interview tops poll

Published 27/09/2011 | 00:32

Sir David Frost's showdown with disgraced American president Richard Nixon has been named the greatest broadcast interview
Sir David Frost's showdown with disgraced American president Richard Nixon has been named the greatest broadcast interview

Sir David Frost's showdown with disgraced American president Richard Nixon has been named the greatest broadcast interview ever in a poll.

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The confrontation between the two men, which inspired a hit play and an Oscar-nominated Hollywood film, was filmed in 1977 - three years after Nixon resigned in the face of the Watergate scandal.

Other notable interviews in the top 20, which saw readers of RadioTimes.com vote for their favourite, included Dennis Potter's final interview with Melvyn Bragg and Martin Bashir's Panorama programme with Princess Diana.

Sir David told Radio Times: "I am thrilled to have received this accolade - especially from the readers of Radio Times and given the stiff opposition. Thank you so much."

Nixon fought and won two US presidential elections but was forced to resign after the Watergate scandal revealed an array of dirty tricks carried out against his opponents by his political allies.

The story of how Sir David persuaded him to speak on camera in a series of interviews in which he admitted he "let down the country" became the basis of the play Frost/Nixon.

It was later made into a film starring Michael Sheen and Frank Langella in the title roles.

The poll was carried out in conjunction with BBC College of Journalism for their Art of Interview season.

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