1 9 6 5 (France/UK)
12 x episodes
This adaptation of Daniel Defoe’s classic novel was a familiar sight on children’s television in the 1960s, being repeated a number of times after its 1965 debut.
Made in France and dubbed into English, it told Crusoe’s story in full, even exploring his pre-shipwreck life through flashbacks which featured his childhood in York, his apprenticeship as a lawyer, his running away to sea and his earlier maritime adventures.
On 16 September 1697, Robinson Crusoe is washed up on a sandy beach unaware that he is the sole survivor of the Esmeralda, a ship bound for Guyana from Brazil, but ultimately doomed when it is caught in a violent storm.
Robinson soon discovers that not only is he the sole survivor but also the sole occupant of a tropical island which he estimates is somewhere off the coast of South America. With little hope of rescue, Robinson begins his search for food, water and shelter whilst having to come to terms with his solitude.
His island solitude is ended when company arrives in the form of a dog he rescues from the washed-up wreckage of his ship and a man he saves from the cannibals who he then names ‘Friday.’
Playing the role of Robinson Crusoe was 23-year-old blonde-haired Austrian-born actor Robert Hoffman with Fabian Canalos appearing in the last four episodes as Friday.
The 12-part series was filmed in the Canary Islands.