Could we soon be talking about Richard Madeley the TV dramatist?
The Richard of Richard & Judy fame has told RadioTimes.com that he is in discussions with two independent production companies about adapting his first novel Some Day I’ll Find You as a drama for the small screen.
“I have had a couple of meetings with a couple of specialist independents, although I know that this sort of thing can move very slowly,” he said.
He has not yet decided if he will adapt the book, a romantic thriller about a missing World War II fighter pilot, or whether someone else would write it.
He also declined to comment on which channel he has in mind for the project but says that he is adamant that he has no wish to return to full-time TV presenting following the demise in 2009 of the Richard & Judy show on the channel Watch.
Madeley and his wife Judy Finnigan were a mainstay of ITV’s daytime schedule with This Morning from 1988 until they moved to Channel 4 in 2001 with the early evening show Richard & Judy. Their move to Watch in 2008 with a similar format lasted just one year.
He says that he is “enjoying” his current ad hoc presenting work, filling in for Matthew Wright on Channel 5 magazine show The Wright Stuff when the presenter is away and also working as a Radio 2 presenter for four months a year.
He said: “I just seem to keep people’s seats warm, and it’s lovely after all those years of the responsibility, of carrying the load.
“When your name’s on the tin you’re kind of carrying the team in the sense that if you screw up, if you kind of lose it or the audience gets bored with you or the ratings fall away and you don’t keep it fresh, I mean those kids are out of a job. So I’m very glad not to have that responsibility any more and have fun.”
Since he and Finnigan stopped presenting together, Madeley says he has rebuffed all offers of full-time presenting work.
“I’ve had two approaches to do kind of a magazine-formatted network TV show, Monday through Friday, and I had no hesitation in saying thankyou but no thankyou. I’ve done all that. Why go back to that? And also, it means I couldn’t do the things I do now.
“If you do a five-day-a-week show, that’s kind of it, particularly as you get older. You just don’t have the time or energy to do anything else. I wouldn’t be able to write books.”
While he and his wife are now both writing novels, he says that there is no professional rivalry between them.
“We’re never been competitive together. In fact, we work very well together in terms of writing. I was discussing my new plot with her over lunch two days ago and I help her with hers as well. We’re not competitive at all.”
Madeley was speaking to promote his new novel The Way You Look Tonight, a thriller set among the Kennedys which is published at the end of this month. He has also started writing his next novel, a murder mystery set during the 1976 UK drought.
* The Way You Look Tonight by Richard Madeley (£7.99, Simon and Schuster) is published on July 31
Ben has worked as a professional journalist specialising in TV and the arts for nearly twenty years. After a two year stint on local newspapers in the mid 1990s, he spent more than 5 years as the broadcast reporter at the Stage newspaper. Following that he enjoyed staff reporting positions at the Sunday Mirror and the Sunday Times breaking stories and writing features before settling as a full time freelance writing for an array of newspapers and magazines - but mainly for the Guardian, Evening Standard, Broadcast, Independent and the New Statesman where he wrote a column.