The Boy in the Dress

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The Boy in the Dress
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Review

It would be tempting to think that the focus of this story is its creator, David Walliams, who was no stranger to rocking a frock in Little Britain and Come Fly with Me. But the comic actor turned children’s writer has a serious point to make in this uplifting version of his debut novel.

Our hero is 12-year-old Dennis (Billy Kennedy), who lives with his couch-potato dad and unreconstructed brother. Dennis is missing his mother, who has left home to live with a roofer, but he soon finds an escape.

A gifted footballer, Dennis also discovers through his new friend Lisa (the school’s coolest girl), that wearing dresses makes him happy. How will he reconcile his interests, or sneak past his fashion-police teachers?

Walliams’s knack of championing the outsider and celebrating difference shines out of a story he says isn’t autobiographical, but is “very personal”. It’s no wonder such a quality cast signed up, including Jennifer Saunders, Tim McInnerny, Steve Speirs and James Buckley, who has some of the best lines as a supremely negative PE teacher. Even supermodel Kate Moss gets to shake a tailfeather, and Walliams allows himself a cameo as a camp referee.

It’s a refreshingly unusual Christmas treat with a punch-the-air final act, and a great use of Queen – have a guess which song they use.

Summary

Family comedy adapted from David Walliams' children's book about 12-year-old Dennis, an ordinary boy who lives in an ordinary town - but somehow feels different from everyone else. A chance sighting in a fashion magazine introduces him to a whole new world of colour and creativity. But can a boy really wear a dress - and what will his headmaster, dad and friends in the football team think if they find out? Billy Kennedy stars as Dennis, with a supporting cast including Jennifer Saunders, Tim McInnerny, Meera Syal, Steve Speirs, Felicity Montagu, James Buckley and Walliams himself, with a cameo appearance by supermodel Kate Moss.

Cast & Crew

Dennis Billy Kennedy
Referee David Walliams
Miss Windsor Jennifer Saunders
Mr Norris James Buckley
Jaspreet Meera Syal
Dad Steve Speirs
Mr Hawthorn Tim McInnerny
Raj Harish Patel
Herself Kate Moss
Miss Price Felicity Montagu
Lisa Temi Orelaja
Darvesh Aaron Chawla
John Oliver Barry-Brook
Gareth Sonny Ashbourne Serkis
Cherise Rosheen Hinze
Mum Emma Cooke
Himself Gary Lineker
Director Matt Lipsey
Executive Producer Mark Freeland
Producer Jo Sargent
Writer David Walliams
Writer Kevin Cecil
Writer Andy Riley
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