ITV order gay sitcom starring Derek Jacobi and Ian McKellen

Sunday 28th October 2012 @ 5:29pm by Aaron

Derek Jacobi. Image credit: Kalpesh Lathigra for Seven Magazine.ITV has commissioned a brand new sitcom starring Sir Ian McKellen and Sir Derek Jacobi (pictured).

Vicious will see the pair, both gay in real life, playing an elderly homosexual couple living together in Covent Garden.

Ageing partners, Freddie and Stuart, are two men who have lived together in a small flat for nearly 50 years. Freddie was a budding actor and Stuart a barman when they first met but their careers are now pretty much over and their lives now consist of reading books, walking their dog and bickering.

Joining Freddie and Stuart is feisty best friend Violet (played by Frances De La Tour). She's young at heart with a delicious sense of humour and always on hand to calm Freddie and Stuart down during one of their many arguments.

Their worlds are turned upside down with the arrival of a young man, Ash, as their new upstairs neighbour. Details on who will play this fourth character have not yet been announced.

The series of six 30-minute episodes, which will be filmed in front of a live audience, is being lined up for broadcast on ITV1 from April 2013, according to the Star on Sunday, and has been written by Gary Janetti, a former writer and executive producer of hit American sitcoms Will & Grace and Family Guy.

An unnamed source told the tabloid newspaper: "No one can quite believe ITV have managed to get Sir Ian on board. Brit stars don't get much bigger than him. It's a great coup for ITV to get these two."

Vicious will be directed by Ed Bye, a veteran of studio-based sitcoms, with other credits to his name including My Family and Red Dwarf.

ITV commissioner Myfanwy Moore says: "ITV is thrilled this exciting and bold sitcom, with stellar performers and writing talent is to join the increasing slate of new look comedy shows on the channel."

McKellen is also the star of a mockumentary pilot currently being pitched to broadcasters by the company behind As Time Goes By and My Family. The Academy sees McKellen playing his own (fictional) brother, the headmaster of a south London drama school - Clapham Academy of Creative Arts (CACA).

Sir Derek Jacobi, meanwhile, stars alongside Anne Reid in forthcoming BBC One comedy drama Antony And Cleopatra. The series is expected to start later this year.

The BBC were also recently developing a sitcom with a similar premise. A pilot for George And Bernard Shaw, written by Cabin Pressure's John Finnemore, was filmed last year for BBC One by Feelgood Fiction. It starred Robert Lindsay and Richard Griffiths as a gay couple on the 'wrong' side of 'middle age'.

This story was updated on Monday 5th November to change the title from 'Vicious Old Queens' (the working title) to just 'Vicious', and to add in the ITV quote, and Frances De La Tour, and Ed Bye details.


Our Guide to 'Vicious'

 

Latest News

Ted Robbins collapses on Phoenix Nights Live stage

Ted Robbins collapses on Phoenix Nights Live stage

Actor Ted Robbins suffered a suspected heart attack whilst performing on stage during the first Phoenix Nights Live show.

QI to be broadcast in America

QI to be broadcast in America

QI, the long-running British panel show hosted by Stephen Fry, is finally set to be broadcast in the USA, with BBC America scheduling repeats.

Radio 4 developing comedy panel show about religion

Radio 4 developing comedy panel show about religion

Radio 4 is developing And God Laughs, a new panel show that 'takes a humorous look at religion in its many and varied forms'. Katy Brand will host.

Catastrophe Series 2 ordered by Channel 4

Catastrophe Series 2 ordered by Channel 4

Just two episodes into its first series, Channel 4 has recommissioned Sharon Horgan and Rob Delaney's sitcom Catastrophe.

BBC preparing special to mark 25 years of Harry & Paul

BBC preparing special to mark 25 years of Harry & Paul

Harry Enfield and Paul Whitehouse are reportedly collaborating with the BBC to make a special to celebrate 25 years of their comedy partnership.

Still Open All Hours ends with 8 million viewers

Still Open All Hours ends with 8 million viewers

The first series of revived sitcom Still Open All Hours came to a close last night with a peak of over 8 million viewers.

Get More News

In The Press

In The Press

The latest press clippings from the newspapers and various internet blogs.

Newsletter

Newsletter

Subscribe to our mailing list to get news and more in your inbox every Monday.

Twitter

Twitter Feed

You can follow us on Twitter too. We post the latest news and gossip every evening.

RSS Feed

RSS Feed

Subscribe to our RSS feed to get our headlines in your news reader software.

Neil Fitzmaurice interview

Neil Fitzmaurice interview

We talk to Neil Fitzmaurice ahead of Phoenix Nights' live stage revival for Comic Relief. Read

David Jason interview

David Jason interview

David Jason talks about Only Fools And Horses, in the process revealing his favourite scene from the show. Read

Let's Play Darts

Let's Play Darts

The comedians involved in Let's Play Darts For Comic Relief talk about how good they are at throwing the 'arrows'. Read

Win 'United We Fall' on DVD

Win 'United We Fall' on DVD

We have three copies of the DVD of football comedy film United We Fall to give away. Find out more: Enter