Quentin Crisp was born in 1908. As an openly gay man in a much less tolerant era, he suffered constant abuse and rejection. But he made it his quest to raise awareness for homosexuality, through courage and determination. He ultimately published his autobiography The Naked Civil Servant, on which this film is based. John Hurt's performance as Crisp won him a BAFTA for Best Actor, while director Jack Gold won the The Desmond Davies Award, for outstanding creative contribution to television.