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Billy Liar

From Academic Kids

Billy Liar (1960) is a novel by Keith Waterhouse and play by Waterhouse and Willis Hall. It concerns the activities of a Walter Mitty-style character, a young man from a working-class background who has greater aspirations.

In 1963, it was made into a film with Tom Courtenay in the role of Billy and Julie Christie as his love interest. Mona Washbourne played his mother, and Wilfred Pickles his father. Rodney Bewes played his best friend. The piece is often seen as archetypal of UK literature in the 1960's and inspired many later 'kitchen-sink' televised dramas. In 2004 the magazine Total Film named it the 12th greatest British film of all time.

The novel was also used as the basis for a television sitcom series of the 1970s (which has never been rerun), and was made into a successful West End musical (entitled simply Billy) starring Michael Crawford.

Waterhouse later wrote a sequel called Billy Liar on the Moon.

Billy Liar is also the title of the second track off of Her Majesty The Decemberists by The Decemberists and the first track of a CD single of the same name.

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