On Bank Holiday Monday, Simon Jones – the original and longest serving Arthur Dent – made a guest appearance on the Radio 3 Breakfast Show to pick out five of his favourite pieces of classical music. Between them, he engaged in a little chat with host Rob Cowan, and when conversation came to Douglas Adam's prototransmedia phenomenon*, The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, as it so inevitably would, he provided a little surprise. He said:
The Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy is going on the road next year, with all the original principal members of the cast. We're going to make stops in various cities around the country as ourselves reconstructing and reimagining a recording with live sound and live music and, well, watch this space because we'll soon have how to book and where to go.
Jones was not specific about which members of the cast were joining the tour, nor if he meant the original radio or TV players would be coming along for the tour. Sadly, two obvious absentees would have to be Richard Vernon and Peter Jones, the originator of Slartibartfast and the original voice of the book, who passed away in 2000 and 1997 respectively.
I'm quite the fan of the recent Hitchhiker's film, and while it's not perfect, I'd trace most of it's faults back to the TV, book and radio incarnations of the story. Not a popular opinion, I know.
If you want to hear Jones make the announcement himself, the show will be available for a few days yet, and I've fashioned a deep link to the very moment in question.
*No, I don't think that's a very good way of putting it at all, do you?