‘Fawlty Towers’ Revival In the Works, John Cleese to Star with His Daughter
One of the most acclaimed comedy series of all time is returning to TV more than four decades later. “Fawlty Towers,” the beloved British sitcom starring John Cleese, is getting a revival, with the “Monty Python” star set to return.
The show is being developed at Castle Rock Entertainment, with Matthew George, Rob Reiner, Michele Reiner, and Derrick Rossi executive producing for the studio. Cleese will write and star in the revival with his daughter, Camilla Cleese.
“What I like about Matt is that, unlike many producers, he really ‘gets’ the creative process,” Cleese said in a statement announcing the project. “When we first met, he offered an excellent first idea, and then Matt, my daughter Camilla, and I had one of the best creative sessions I can remember. By dessert we had an overall concept so good that, a few days later, it won the approval of Rob and Michele Reiner. Camilla and I look forward enormously to expanding it into a series.”
The original “Fawlty Towers” ran for two seasons of six episodes each in 1975 and 1979. Written by Cleese and his then-wife Connie Booth, the series starred Cleese as Basil Fawlty, the selfish and hapless proprietor of the titular seaside inn. Prunella Scales starred as Fawlty’s wife Sybil, while Booth and the late Andrew Sachs played the hotel staff. In spite of its short 12-episode run, the series was widely-acclaimed, and remains a touchstone of British television; in 2000, the British Film Institute ranked it No. 1 in their list of the 100 Greatest British Television Programmes.
The new series will see Cleese return as Basil, with Camilla Cleese starring as his newly discovered daughter, who teams up with him to run a new boutique hotel. It’s unlikely 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 idea of working with him makes me laugh.”
“Meeting John and Camilla was one of the great thrills of my life. I’m obsessed with ‘Fawlty Towers’ and the legendary characters he created,” George added. “I’ve watched the first two seasons so many times I have lost count. I dreamed of one day being involved in a continuation of the story. Now it’s come true.”
John Cleese is represented by CAA and Anonymous Content. Camilla Cleese is repped by Weintraub Tobin Chediak Coleman Grodin.
More to come…
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