Might British comic Rowan Atkinson be bringing back his popular roguish character Edmund Blackadder to the big screen?
In an interview with The Sun, John Lloyd, who produced the Blackadder series as well as a number of other classic comedies for the BBC, states that he has been in talking with Atkinson about a possible Blackadder film and even divulged some of the details on the possible story-
Rowan and I had this great idea, because we are all getting a bit old, of doing a kind of Dad’s Army… They are a platoon in Walmington-on-Sea where they get kidnapped by a German submarine and taken to Colditz. They then have to escape. Because Tony Robinson is probably very near 70 now he would be just about the right age. We’d do it as a Blackadder – it would make a good movie, I think.
(Tony Robinson, for those who don’t know, played Edmund Blackadder’s faithful servant Baldrick in the series. He is also only 66.)
For those of you who are unfamiliar with the show, and how will disregard my order to go to Netflix right this moment and watch it, Blackadder was a show that ran four series and two specials that chronicled various scions of the titular aristocratic famil. Atkinson played Edmund Blackadder and his various descendants, also all named Edmund, all rogues to one degree or another interacting with some of the biggest names of British history.
Interestingly, this idea would be the shortest jumps in time between iterations of the character. Indeed, it suggests that while the Blackadder of Blackadder Goes Forth was fighting on the fields of World War One, this other Edmund was back in England. Depending on what age they would make the character for this film, he would either be either be an unknown son or some bastard half-brother of the Blackadder Goes Forth Edmund. Either way would fit into the family’s history easily.
As a diehard Blackadder fan, this certainly sounds like an exciting idea and I hope that it comes to fruition. There seems to be a mini boom in the popularity of television shows making the transition to the big screen in Britain right now with films like The Inbetweeners and The Sweeney. That sort of popularity certainly couldn’t hurt a Blackadder film’s chances at the box office.
But as a diehard Blackadder fan, I know that there have been previous ideas to revive the series that never progressed beyond the level of idle talk. For years there was the rumor that a fifth Blackadder series was going to be made set in the 1960s around a mod rock band called The Blackadder Five. There was even some discussion of doing a radio series of that premise in order to work around the fact that Atkinson, Robinson, etc were starting too look a little too old to convincingly play rock and rollers.
If this were to come to pass, I would hope that Richard Curtis, who co-created the show with Atkinson, and Ben Elton, who scripted series two through four and both specials, will be able to return to lend a hand. It would also be great to see a return of many of the supporting players from the series have gone on to their own fame including Miranda Richardson, Stephen Frye and Hugh Laurie. And would it be too much to ask for a return of Rick Mayall’s Lord Flashart? Woof!