Ghosts star Laurence Rickard has given an update on series three of the BBC sitcom, which plans to begin filming sometime next year.
The show follows the antics of Alison and Mike, a young couple who unexpectedly inherit a huge mansion, only to discover it is haunted by ghosts from bygone eras, portrayed by the Horrible Histories comedy troupe.
Naturally, many of the show’s most memorable moments involve the large ensemble cast crowding around each other, but that may not be advisable while filming series three if the coronavirus pandemic continues.
Ideas for the third series are already gestating in the minds of the writing team, but just how they will be executed remains uncertain as nobody can be sure of how the health crisis will develop.
Co-creator and star Laurence Rickard, who plays Robin the Caveman, gave RadioTimes.com and other press an insight into the challenges of planning a series in this climate.
“One of the tricky things at the moment is knowing how rules and regulations will change between now and February,” he said. “And also, I think everyone’s got an eye over how different productions manage things and how sets work.”
Since the pandemic hit, UK broadcasters have collaborated on guidelines setting out how sets should operate to lessen the risk of spreading COVID-19.
While no major fundamental changes have been made to the upcoming series just yet, the writers are looking at how they can strip back certain scenes.
Rickard continued: “A bit of a switch is trying to keep an eye on avoiding unnecessary crowd scenes and things like that, but we always want to be trying to be bigger and better and more ambitious.
“I don’t think we’re tempering it in that sense, we’re just having to look at some of the practicalities of shooting with a slightly more intense eye.”
While filming the second series, due to premiere on BBC One and BBC iPlayer next week, the production had to scrap plans for a pivotal crowd scene as social distancing measures were first introduced.
The team behind Ghosts will take a closer look at the logistics of making their third series early next year, when it is hoped they will have a clearer picture of how COVID-19 will affect shooting.
Ghosts co-star Kiell Smith-Bynoe told RadioTimes.com that filming is looking to resume sometime in “the first six months” of 2021, depending on scheduling conflicts.
“I think because so many things have moved around and other people are in other productions, some of the cast are in really quite big productions, so they’re just trying to find out the availability for everyone,” he said.
Ghosts was recommissioned for a second and third series last year.