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Dame Helen Mirren and Sir Anthony Hopkins appear in unseen snaps from Play For Today

Dame Helen Mirren and Sir Anthony Hopkins were amongst the stars to appear in previously unseen snaps from Play For Today shared on Monday.

The actress, 75, and Silence Of The Lambs star, 82, looked sensational as they posed for photos at the time, with the BBC sharing the archive pictures to celebrate the show’s 50th anniversary.

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Helen appeared in the programme’s thirteenth season in Soft Targets by Stephen Poliakoff, which was directed by Charles Sturridge in 1982.

Looking back: Dame Helen Mirren and Sir Anthony Hopkins appeared in unseen snaps from Play For Today as BBC celebrated the show’s 50th anniversary on Monday

Helen looked stylish in her appearance in the play as Celia, which saw her act opposite the late Ian Holm’s Alexei.

The play focused on the struggles of a Russian (Holm) man living in London, who finds himself being targeted by British Intelligence.  

For her role, Helen wore a chic black jacket over a white button-up shirt, which she accessorised with a velvet bow and a white hat.

Theatrical: Anthony appeared in two plays for the show, Hearts And Flowers (pictured) in 1970 and The Childhood Friend in 1974

Theatrical: Anthony appeared in two plays for the show, Hearts And Flowers (pictured) in 1970 and The Childhood Friend in 1974

Intense: Helen appeared in Soft Targets alongside Iam Holm in 1982, and the play focused on a Russian (Holm) man living in London, who finds himself being targeted by British Intelligence

Intense: Helen appeared in Soft Targets alongside Iam Holm in 1982, and the play focused on a Russian (Holm) man living in London, who finds himself being targeted by British Intelligence

Gritty drama: A young Ray Winstone was seen one of the photos sporting a bruised face for his role in Scum, one of Play For Today's most controversial plays

Gritty drama: A young Ray Winstone was seen one of the photos sporting a bruised face for his role in Scum, one of Play For Today’s most controversial plays

Controversial: Scum told the story of three young delinquents in a British borstal, and features suicide, assault, and gang rape

Controversial: Scum told the story of three young delinquents in a British borstal, and features suicide, assault, and gang rape

Starring role: Julie Walters appeared in Intensive Care alongside Alan Bennett

Starring role: Julie Walters appeared in Intensive Care alongside Alan Bennett

Anthony, meanwhile, appeared in two plays for the show, Hearts And Flowers in 1970 and The Childhood Friend in 1974.

The picture of Anthony came from his first appearance in Play For Today, and saw him relax in an armchair while reading a book and smoking a cigarette.

In the drama, Anthony takes on the role of Bob, a TV host who has to attend his father’s funeral with his architect brother.

Play For Today was an anthology drama series which was aired on BBC One from 1970 to 1984 and featured 300 productions, including original TV plays and adaptations of stage plays and novels. 

Leading man: Tim Curry starred as Glen in Schmoedipus in 1974 who appears on a middle-aged woman's doorstep and informs her he's her illegitimate son that she had given away

Leading man: Tim Curry starred as Glen in Schmoedipus in 1974 who appears on a middle-aged woman’s doorstep and informs her he’s her illegitimate son that she had given away

Like being on stage: Alison Steadman appeared as Candice Marie alongside Roger Sloman's Keith and Anthony O'Donnell's Ray in Nuts In May

Like being on stage: Alison Steadman appeared as Candice Marie alongside Roger Sloman’s Keith and Anthony O’Donnell’s Ray in Nuts In May

Plot: Nuts In May follows a middle-class couple as they go camping in Dorset, but finds them struggling to get any peace and quiet

Behind-the-scenes: Alison and Roger were seen enjoying a coffee with director Mike Leigh

Plot: Nuts In May follows a middle-class couple as they go camping in Dorset, but finds them struggling to get any peace and quiet

Tense: Gemma Jones in The Lie by Ingmar Bergman, which details the live of a couple feeling stuck in their marriage

Tense: Gemma Jones in The Lie by Ingmar Bergman, which details the live of a couple feeling stuck in their marriage

Star: The late Peter Postlethwaite appeared in The Muscle Market by Alan Bleasdale in 1981

Star: The late Peter Postlethwaite appeared in The Muscle Market by Alan Bleasdale in 1981

It began in October 1970 with the play The Long Distance Piano Player, and the show became so popular that some plays drew in an impressive eight million people.

A young Ray Winstone was seen one of the photos sporting a bruised face for his role in Scum, one of Play For Today’s most controversial plays. 

Other big names to appear in the programme include Tim Curry in Schmoedipus, Julie Walters in Intensive Care, and Alison Steadman in Nuts In May.  

Drama Out Of Crisis: A Celebration Of Play For Today airs on BBC4 at 9pm on Monday.

Popular: Play For Today was an anthology drama series which aired from 1970 to 1984 and featured 300 productions (pictured Sharon Duce and Bernard Hill in Housewives' Choice)

Popular: Play For Today was an anthology drama series which aired from 1970 to 1984 and featured 300 productions (pictured Sharon Duce and Bernard Hill in Housewives’ Choice)

Success: The show became so popular that some plays drew in an impressive eight million people (pictured: Peter Firth and Caroline Langrishe in The Flipside Of Dominick Hide)

Success: The show became so popular that some plays drew in an impressive eight million people (pictured: Peter Firth and Caroline Langrishe in The Flipside Of Dominick Hide)

Different roles: Bernard and Alison both appeared in multiple plays for the show, and were pictured in Our Flesh And Blood

Different roles: Bernard and Alison both appeared in multiple plays for the show, and were pictured in Our Flesh And Blood

Ensemble: (L-R) Steve Sweeney, Perry Fenwick, David John and Martin Murph appeared in A Mother Like Him in 1982

Ensemble: (L-R) Steve Sweeney, Perry Fenwick, David John and Martin Murph appeared in A Mother Like Him in 1982

Musical: Sam Dale and Gerard Murphy starred in in Catchpenny Twist in 1977

Musical: Sam Dale and Gerard Murphy starred in in Catchpenny Twist in 1977

Play: Harriet Reynolds, Tim Stern, Janine Duvitski, Alison Steadman, and John Salthouse starred in Mike Leigh's TV play Abigail's Party

Play: Harriet Reynolds, Tim Stern, Janine Duvitski, Alison Steadman, and John Salthouse starred in Mike Leigh’s TV play Abigail’s Party

One to watch: Drama Out Of Crisis: A Celebration Of Play For Today airs on BBC4 at 9pm on Monday (pictured: Alastair Sim in The General's Day)

One to watch: Drama Out Of Crisis: A Celebration Of Play For Today airs on BBC4 at 9pm on Monday (pictured: Alastair Sim in The General’s Day)

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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