London: ‘Yes, Prime Minister’, the popular satire on the workings of the British government, is set to grace British television again.
The latest edition is said to be based on the current government, and the Rt Hon Jim Hacker, previously played by the late Paul Eddington, will be confronting “the greatest economic crisis in a generation”.
UKTV, who commissioned the revised show for TV channel Gold, described the present British political landscape as the “perfect setting” for a return of the series.
Filming is expected to start over the summer but executives have yet to finalise details of who will be cast in the roles of Hacker, his permanent secretary Sir Humphrey Appleby and Bernard Wooley, his famously obtuse principle private secretary.
“The political landscape in Britain today is the perfect setting for ‘Yes, Prime Minister’ to return,” the Telegraph quoted Jane Rogerson, Director of Commissioning at UKTV, as saying.
“Just look at Pastygate. That could have been in the original ‘Yes, Minister’. We’ve only received the first script so far so I can’t give solid details of the plot other than to say the reference points about the crises, the challenges, the personalities; they are all utterly contemporary of the present day,” she said.
‘Yes, Minister’, set principally in Jim Hacker’s private office within the fictional Department for Administrative Affairs, was first broadcast in 1980 and ran for four years.
Its sequel, ‘Yes, Prime Minister’ began in 1986 and followed the beleaguered Hacker as he continued to clash with his civil servants on becoming Prime Minister.
Sir Humphrey Appleby was played by the late Nigel Hawthorne, who died in 2001, and Derek Fowlds starred as Bernard.
The critically acclaimed series was even enjoyed by the then Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher.
Writers Jonathan Lynn and Antony Jay, who co-wrote the original series and were involved in its later stage production, were confirmed as being the authors of the new programmes.
The six-part series is expected to be screened either at the end of this year or at the beginning of next, and will be filmed in front of a live audience in London.