After Almost 40 Years, John Cleese To Star In New BBC Sitcom
John Cleese is funny. Seriouisly funny. Think of what you've seen him in… Monty Python, Fawlty Towers, A Fish Called Wanda… The man is comedy incarnate. And now, after almost forty years away from them, Cleese is returning for a BBC Sitcom. The legendary actor will co-start with Alison Steadman in a six-part comedy series called Edith which will appear on BBC One. This reunites the pair who played a married couple in 1986's Clockwise.
Edith is created and written by Charles McKeown, who was nominated for an Oscar for Brazil, a film directed by another Python alum, Terry Gilliam. It also stars Jason Watkins, Jessica Hynes, Anne Reid, Rosie Cavaliero, James Cosmo and Peter Egan.
Cleese hasn't done a BBC Sitcom since Fawlty Towers which ran for two seasons, 1975 and 1979. The actor has appeared on quite a few American sitcoms in that time including 3rd Rock from the Sun and Will & Grace. He said of the new series:
These are the most enjoyable scripts I've been sent in the last 100 years. It will also be particularly nice to work with Alison again since we joined forces in 'Clockwise' all that time ago.
The concept behind the series is that Steadman is a widow who enjoys daily visits from an old boyfriend, Phil (Cleese), who now lives across the street. Just as Phil finally convinces Edith to marry him and move abroad to a sunnier climate, her 50-year-old son (Watkins) announces that he's moving back home after having left his job and family, which puts Edith and Phil's dreams on hold.