“Fawlty Towers” revival ordered, John Cleese as the star

The 1975 series is one of the highest-grossing British sitcoms of all time.

One of the most acclaimed comedy series of all time returns to television more than four decades later. Fawlty Towers, the popular British sitcom starring John Cleese, is getting a revival and the Monty Python star is back.

The show is being developed at Castle Rock Entertainment with Matthew George, Rob Reiner, Michele Reiner and Derrick Rossi serving as executive producers for the studio. Cleese will co-write and star with his daughter, Camilla Cleese.

“What I like about Matt is that unlike a lot of producers, he really ‘gets’ the creative process,” Cleese said in a statement announcing the project. “When we first met he offered an excellent initial idea and then Matt, my daughter Camilla and I had one of the best creative sessions I can remember. Up until dessert we had such a good overall concept that Rob and Michele Reiner approved it a few days later. Camilla and I are really excited to expand it into a series.”

The original Fawlty Towers ran in 1975 and 1979 for two seasons of six episodes each. Written by Cleese and his then-wife Connie Booth, the series starred Cleese as Basil Fawlty, the selfish and unhappy owner of the eponymous seaside inn. Prunella Scales starred as Fawlty’s wife, Sybil, while Booth and the late Andrew Sachs played the hotel staff. Despite its short 12-episode run, the series has been widely acclaimed and remains a touchstone of British television. In 2000, the British Film Institute ranked it number 1 in its list of the 100 Greatest British Television Programmes.

In the new series, Cleese returns as Basil, with Camilla Cleese as his newfound daughter who teams up with him to run a new boutique hotel. It is unlikely that the rest of the original series cast will return; Sachs died in 2016, Scales retired in 2020 after being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, and Booth quit acting in the ’90s.

“John Cleese is a comedy legend,” Rob Reiner said in a statement. “Just the thought of working with him makes me laugh.”

“Meeting John and Camilla was one of the biggest thrills of my life. I’m obsessed with ‘Fawlty Towers’ and the iconic characters he created,” added George. “I’ve watched the first two seasons so many times I’ve lost count. I dreamed of one day being part of a sequel to the story. Now it has come true.”

John Cleese is represented by CAA and Anonymous Content. Camilla Cleese is represented by Weintraub Tobin Chediak Coleman Grodin.

There’s more to come…

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https://www.indiewire.com/2023/02/fawlty-towers-revival-john-cleese-1234807454/ “Fawlty Towers” revival ordered, John Cleese as the star

Lindsay Lowe

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