The BBC's Director of Comedy has said that the broadcaster would be "happy" to talk to John Cleese about his upcoming Fawlty Towers revival, although no contact has been made yet.


The Monty Python alum shocked fans earlier this year when he revealed that he was writing new episodes of his classic sitcom in collaboration with his daughter, Camilla Cleese.

John was quick to clarify, in an interview with GB News, that the return of Fawlty Towers is not in development for the BBC as he felt "you wouldn't get the freedom".

Jon Petrie, who leads the broadcaster's comedy output, confirmed that the BBC had no advance warning about the announcement, but appeared open to discussions with the Cleeses about their ideas.

"We found out about it when everyone else did," he began, speaking to press at a showcase of upcoming BBC sitcoms. "I mean, we haven't spoken to John. Obviously, it's a legendary show.

"You know, we'd be happy to talk to John if he wanted to talk about it."

The cast of Fawlty Towers.
The cast of Fawlty Towers. BBC

When asked whether Fawlty Towers could still succeed in modern times, with social attitudes and styles of humour being quite different to 40 years ago, Petrie added: "I don't know [if it can still work]. I'll have to see when it comes out."

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The Fawlty Towers revival seemed to come out of the blue to almost everyone, with even co-creator Connie Booth – who was once married to Cleese – revealing she had no idea that it was being worked on.

Last month, she told The Times that she would "have appreciated learning about the project from John rather than reading about it in the papers".

Fawlty Towers is available to stream on BBC iPlayer. Check out more of our Comedy coverage or visit our TV Guide and Streaming Guide to find out what's on.


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