Rowan Atkinson: ‘There’ll be no more Mr Bean’

The actor wants the character to remain 'ageless'

Rowan Atkinson has ruled out a return for his hugely successful Mr Bean character.

The actor, currently starring in the spoof spy sequel Johnny English Reborn, told BBC Radio 1’s Newsbeat:

I’ve always regarded Mr Bean as an ageless, timeless figure. I don’t want him to particularly grow old, and if I carry on playing him then he’s going to get older, whether we like it or not. I would like to remember Mr Bean how he was five or 10 years ago.

The first episode of the show about the silent, childlike man and the trouble he got himself into went out on New Year’s Day in 1990, leading to 19 episodes, an animated cartoon series and two films, the last of which, Mr Bean’s Holiday, came out in 2007.

Atkinson made headlines himself in August when he “cheated death” after crashing his McLaren F1 car, which then burst into flames.

However, his love of fast cars came in useful while making Johnny English Reborn, as he got to do his own driving and some of his own stunts. He said:

There is a sequence in Hong Kong where I had to step over a 25-storey building drop, but I said ‘no’ to that as I do have a problem with vertigo. I’ll do an occasional stunt, but the problem is the insurance people want you to turn up the next day and be OK to film.

Johnny English Reborn is in cinemas now