Father Ted the musical is a heavenly idea says Graham Linehan

The co-creator of the classic Channel 4 comedy says he wants to bring the show back as a musical with dancing and "spinning cardinals"

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Father Ted creator Graham Linehan says he wants to revive Channel 4’s well-loved ecclesiastical comedy as a musical.

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“I would never bring back the TV show, because of the risk you poison people’s memories of the original,” he says.

“But if you were to come up with a completely new format, I think it would be worth doing. I have this vision of a dance number, with spinning cardinals.”

Were the project to proceed, it would have to reference child abuse scandals within the Catholic Church, adds the writer: “The jokes would have to have a little bit more edge, because you just can’t ignore this stuff.”

And while co-creator Arthur Mathews is “not as convinced” of the musical idea according to Linehan, he still insists: “I think it could work.”

Set in a priests’ parochial house on the fictional Craggy Island, Father Ted came to an abrupt end in 1998 after 25 episodes when lead actor Dermot Morgan died suddenly from a heart attack.

Other cast members including Ardal O’Hanlon, who played the hapless Father Dougal McGuire, and Pauline McLynn, aka housekeeper Mrs Doyle, are still acting.

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The series was chosen as BBC head of comedy Shane Allen’s all-time favourite show during a Radio Times poll in 2013.