Seidler reveals pre-Oscar jitters


David Seidler wrote the screenplay for The King's Speech

David Seidler has admitted he’s terrified about having to make an acceptance speech if The King’s Speech picks up the Oscar for original screenplay.

The screenwriter – who like the film’s lead character King George VI has struggled in the past with a stammer – said he didn’t want to embarrass his daughter if he picks up the award.

“Terror. Abject terror. Not so much of stuttering. I’m not really concerned that I will stutter on that occasion. I think it’s more that I could easily become the new Sally Field,” he said, referring to the actress’ emotional 1984 Oscar speech.

“I could easily blubber, because it’s been such a long journey, and it’s such a meaningful one to me, such a personal journey.

“I hope I don’t disgrace my 21-year-old daughter, who’s my date for the Oscars. She’ll be sitting there mortified if her dad stands up there and can’t speak, and weeps.

“But it would be a momentous occasion.”

Telling the story of the stammering monarch has been a lifetime ambition for David, ever since he subdued his own stutter nearly 60 years ago.

“I had huge trouble with the ‘H’ sound, so when the telephone rang, I would break into a cold sweat, because I couldn’t say hello,” the 73-year-old recalled.

“There came a period when I was actually excused from responding in [school]. I didn’t have to speak in class. It was that bad.”