No doubt remains: a mole has infiltrated the Circus, code name for the British Secret Intelligence Service. It can only be one of four men operating at the very highest level. Sidelined agent George Smiley is covertly tapped to root out the mole, a task that requires a painstaking dig through the double-blind world of Cold War-era espionage and his own past. Alec Guinness brilliantly captures the weary heart and steely soul of John le Carré's master spy in an intricate drama hailed as one of the finest ever made for television. 7 episodes, 3 DVD or 2 Blu-ray discs, approx. 324 minutes, SDH, CC.
Episode 1: Return to the Circus
Retired espionage veteran George Smiley is called out on a top secret mission: to uncover a Soviet agent within MI6's echelons.
Episode 2: Tarr Tells His Story
Retired from the "Circus", George Smiley, former right-hand of the late Control, meets Ricky Tarr, a British agent who went AWOL, believe defected. Tarr tells of how a mission to Portugal led him to learning about the mole in the "Circus".
Episode 3: Smiley Tracks the Mole
The investigation begins, with Peter Guillam burgling the archives for information, while Smiley visits an old comrade whose past knowledge could prove vital to locating the spy.
Episode 4: How It All Fits Together
While Guillam and Tarr come under pressure, Smiley recounts his one meeting with the Soviet master spy Karla, who is undoubtedly running the spy inside MI6.
Episode 5: Tinker Tailor
Smiley goes to meet Jim Prideaux who is now back in Britain having survived his experience in Czechoslovakia. His testimony and that of others sheds new light on the "Testify" fiasco and source "Merlin".
Episode 6: Smiley Sets a Trap
Smiley confronts one of his suspects and gives him the results of his investigations, which could prove a considerable embarrassment to those concerned.
Episode 7: Flushing Out the Mole
Smiley springs his trap and catches the spy. He later interrogates the spy and learns about how and why it happened, and the answers he gets robs him of any sense of victory.
- Exclusive interview with John le Carré
- Production notes
- Glossary of main characters and terms
- Cast filmographies
- le Carré biography and booklist
Packaging: Boxed set
Run Time: 324 minutes, plus bonus programming
Format: Full screen
Number of discs: 3
Color or B&W: Color
CC: Yes, main programming only
Region Code: 1
Aspect Ratio: 4:3
"A smashing thriller"The New York Times
"Exhilarating"The Washington Post
"…one of the most madly atmospheric and enjoyably literate films every done for television."The Washington Post
"Terrifically satisfying and thought-provoking entertainment."The Washington Post
BAFTA TV Award Winner for Best Actor (Alec Guinness, 1980)
BAFTA TV Award Winner for Best Film Cameraman (1980)
BAFTA TV Award Nomination for Best Actress (Beryl Reid, 1980)
BAFTA TV Award Nomination for Best Costume Design (1980)
BAFTA TV Award Nomination for Best Design (1980)
BAFTA TV Award Nomination for Best Drama Series/Serial (1980)
BAFTA TV Award Nomination for Best Film Sound (1980)
BAFTA TV Award Nomination for Best Graphics (1980)
BAFTA TV Award Nomination for Best Film Editor (1980)
Broadcasting Press Guild Award Winner for Best Actor (Alec Guinness, 1980)
Emmy Award Nomination for Outstanding Limited Series (1981)