Ian Hendry in Bobbikins [1959] – Previously Unknown Film Role As A BBC Radio Announcer Discovered By Film Enthusiast

Ian Hendry’s BBC Radio Announcer In ‘Bobbikins’ [1959], Confirmed As His 2nd Speaking Role In A Film.

The story of Ian’s life and career has been greatly enhanced by the in-depth biography written by Gabriel Hershman – Send In The Clowns – The Yo Yo Life Of Ian Hendry;  and the various discoveries that have been made and shared on this website.

But an email received this morning from Phil Ellis, via the  website contact form, has alerted me to his new discovery of a previously unknown [and uncredited] appearance by Ian in a film. So a big thanks to Phil for spotting Ian’s fleeting appearance!

It’s just a small part as a BBC radio announcer in the film Bobbikins – which features a youthful looking Max Bygraves and Shirley Jones – released in July 1959. The film is quite possibly the original ‘adult talking baby’ film, which then inspired a genre of it’s own – including the likes of ‘Look Who’s Talking’ [1989].

Video: Ian Hendry in Bobbikins [1959]

Ian can be spotted at the c. 51 minutes mark and is now confirmed as his second speaking role in a film. His first talking part in a movie came a few months earlier, when he played the part of Cyril in ‘Room At The Top’, released in January 1959.

Video above: See Ian Hendry as the BBC Radio announcer, in this excerpt from the film, Bobbikins [1959]

Bobbikins also features Billie Whitelaw, whom Ian would work with again, many years later, in the episode of Supernatural titled ‘Countess Ilona’ [1977].

Whitelaw was married twice, first to the actor Peter Vaughan and then to the writer and critic, Robert Muller.

Muller wrote ‘Afternoon of a Nymph’  – the second of his seven plays for ABC TV’s Armchair Theatre series – which Ian starred in and where he met his co-star and future wife-to-be, Janet Munro.

Bobbikins [1959]

Bobbikins is a 1959 British film in CinemaScope released by 20th Century Fox and directed by Robert Day. It stars Shirley Jones and Max Bygraves.


This adventure follows the story of a young navy man, his wife (Shirley Jones) and their baby son, Bobby aka Bobbikins. To his surprise, Dad discovers his son talks, not baby-talk or gibberish but adult conversations with his father only. Bobbikins learns stock market tips and passes them to his Dad.

After making a killing on the stock market, problems really begin. The dad is presumed mad, the government is after him, and the break down of relations between the young couple ensues. But there is hope.

A comedy with a happy ending.


Shirley Jones as Betty Barnaby
Max Bygraves as Ben Barnaby
Steven Stocker as Bobbikins Barnaby
Billie Whitelaw as Lydia Simmons
Barbara Shelley as Valerie
Colin Gordon as Dr. Phillips
Charles ‘Bud’ Tingwell as Luke Parker
Lionel Jeffries as Gregory Mason
Charles Carson as Sir Jason Crandall
Rupert Davies as Jock Fleming
Noel Hood as Nurse
David Lodge as Hargreave
John Welsh as Admiral

Watch Full Movie – See Video Below

I’ve discovered the complete film on the following website – which also has a large number of other old, difficult to find films. You can watch the film by clicking on link below or, alternatively, use by using the video embed below:

Bobbikins [1959] – Complete film

Video above: Complete film – Bobbikins [1959]

Thanks again to Phil for sharing this discovery. And if anyone else finds any rare memorabilia, footage or anecdotes about Ian they would like to share, I can always be reached via the website contact form.


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Until next time,

Neil Hendry
Editor, Official Tribute To Ian Hendry

Further Reading

A detailed account of the life and work of Ian Hendry in the new biography:

Read: ‘Send in the Clowns – The Yo Yo Life Of Ian Hendry’ by Gabriel Hershman

Send In The Clowns - The Yo Yo Life of Ian Hendry



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