Life was a bit too short for the BBC2 comedy starring Warwick Davis as a version of himself.
Series one of Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant’s sitcom about the ups and downs in “the life of a showbiz dwarf” ended in 2011 to mixed reviews, and was followed last year by a concluding special featuring Val Kilmer.
But Davis says it could return, possibly with another one-off.
“I asked Ricky when we did the last one if we’d do anything again and he said, ‘Well now it’s open-ended, we could do another one’,” said Davis. “For Ricky, an hour special is a lot less of a time commitment for them than writing a whole other series.
“So they certainly don’t rule it out. And we still keep in touch and… yeah I think it’d be great to do something. Because the thing is, you do remember the time that you had doing it and it was fun, it was a fun experience. I learnt a lot on it as well. And Ricky and I, you know, we’ve not closed the door fully on it. So who knows, never say never. I’d like to go back.”
Davis said that any revival could revisit his character “in some years and see if his career’s gone anywhere, what he’s up to”.
He added that some of the critical responses to the show surprised him, especially from those he said were “offended on my behalf”.
“I was one of the creators of the show. I understand. You don’t need to get offended for me. As time has gone on and the show has been repeated a number of times, and is on in many countries in the world, people have started to understand it. And it’s true with a lot of Ricky and Stephen’s stuff, it’s often ahead of its time and people react to it, but then they digest it and start to get it. And then it becomes embraced, and then it becomes loved. And that’s sort of what Life’s Too Short has gone through in the past few years, that whole kind of evolution to where it is now. People absolutely love it, and they get it.”
Davis takes the mantle from the late Bob Monkhouse who last hosted the UK version of the show, based on the legendary comedy game show Hollywood Squares, in 1997.
It features a grid of nine boxes containing celebrities who answer questions, with the contestants having to say whether they ‘agree’ or ‘disagree’ with the celebrity’s answer. If they are correct they win that square and if they get three boxes in a line – vertically, horizontally or diagonally – they take the round and the money, before the overall winner goes on to play the end game for the star prize.
Davis said of his new gig: “It went really well. It was certainly a daunting challenge for me, coming from a background where I’d really had no experience doing game shows. And it’s not only a game show, it’s kind of a chat show, a panel show, it’s all of those things in one. But I was just so delighted that ITV sort of put their trust in me to bring this back.”
On each show, comedians Tim Vine and Joe Wilkinson will be housed in a square and will compete alongside other famous faces.
Guests set to appear include Jonathan Ross and James Corden. Davis said of them: “What’s lovely the celebs here they’re a much more laid-back version of themselves than we normally know.”
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.