Cleese will write and star in the reboot alongside his daughter, Camilla Cleese. The new series will focus on how Basil deals with the challenges of the modern world, as well as seeing the father and daughter – who have only just met – joining forces to run a boutique hotel.
Fawlty Towers was broadcast on BBC2 for two seasons, in 1975 and 1979, focusing on a hotel in Torquay and its calamitous owners. In 2019 it was crowned the greatest British sitcom of all time by a panel on behalf of the Radio Times.
On Tuesday (6 Feb), Castle Rock Entertainment announced it had finalised a deal with Cleese to bring back the series.
— FAWLTY TOWERS (@FAWLTYTOWERS_) February 7, 2023
Matthew George is set to direct and produce the reboot, which will also have actor Rob Reiner, his wife and actress Michelle Reiner, and Derrick Rossi as executive producers.
The idea behind the show was developed between Cleese and George.
“He offered an excellent idea,” Cleese said of George, leading to “one of the best creative sessions I can remember.”
Cleese continued: “By dessert we had an overall concept so good that, a few days later, it won the approval of Rob and Michele Reiner.
“Camilla and I look forward enormously to expanding it into a series.”
George, meanwhile, said he was a lifelong fan of Fawlty Towers, describing meeting Cleese and his daughter as one of the “great thrills” in his life.
“I’ve watched the first two seasons so many times I have lost count,” George said. “I dreamed of one day being involved in a continuation of the story. Now it’s come true.”
Bob Reiner said of Cleese: “Just the idea of working with him makes me laugh”, calling the original “comedy legend”.
The original show was written by Cleese and Connie Booth.