Stephen Fry and Hugh Laurie reunite for new film

Tuesday 1st June 2021, 12:04pm by Jay Richardson

  • Stephen Fry and Hugh Laurie are working on a film together, The Canterville Ghost
  • The pair will voice characters on the long-delayed animation, based on Oscar Wilde's short story
Fry And Laurie: Reunited. Image shows from L to R: Stephen Fry, Hugh Laurie

Stephen Fry and Hugh Laurie are to act together on screen for the first time in more than a decade.

Animated film The Canterville Ghost, based on the short story by Oscar Wilde, has been in development for 11 years but is only now in production.

"We finally completed the finance-raise on The Canterville Ghost with Stephen Fry & Hugh Laurie" producer Robert Chandler tweeted yesterday. "The animated movie is in production for release late next year. It is a complete joy to be working on a film bringing Stephen and Hugh together again."

Fry is set to voice Sir Simon De Canterville, the eponymous ghost who haunts an English mansion moved into by an American family, while IMDb credits Laurie as The Grim Reaper.

The full cast has yet to be confirmed but Miranda Hart, Toby Jones, Imelda Staunton and Freddie Highmore have all previously been attached.

Adapted for Space Age Films by writing duo Giles New and Keiron Self, whose credits include That Mitchell And Webb Look and Shaun The Sheep, the film is also set to see Kim Burdon make his directorial feature debut.

Fry and Laurie starred in ITV's adaptations of PG Wodehouse's Jeeves and Wooster stories between 1990 and 1993 and last reunited on screen in 2010 (pictured) for a retrospective celebration of 30 years of their partnership for Gold.

In 2014, they both lent their voices to computer game LittleBigPlanet 3.

Speaking to Steve Wright on his Radio 2 show in January last year, Laurie said that the pair, who began their comedy careers in the Cambridge Footlights, had discussed performing live together again.

He explained: "Actually we talked about doing it on stage for a long time, so long in fact we passed the date we'd set for ourselves! We see each other a lot and we talk about it often."

Then in November, Fry reflected upon the possibility of reviving their sketch show A Bit of Fry & Laurie, which ran for four series on BBC One and BBC Two between 1989 and 1995.

He told Smooth Radio: "We talk about it. I think the thing about the comedy side of things is that when you do sketch comedy, it's kind of like being at school doing impressions of your teachers.

"And so for things like Blackadder or sketch shows, if you play a general and you're in your 20s as I was, it's kind of funny because you're like a child putting on whiskers and pretending to be a grown-up.

"But when you're actually an age that a general could be, or a judge, or a bishop, or a figure of authority, then it's a different sort of comedy, then it's kind of character acting. It loses some of that cheekiness that you get from young person's comedy and so I think that sort of thing is very much a young performer's game.

"But yeah, we talk about it a lot but we also enjoy doing our own things."

A Bit Of Fry & Laurie - The BBC TV Soundtracks was released by Audible in April.

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