Richard Curtis has confirmed that Blackadder will be returning for a Comic Relief special this year – although lead star Rowan Atkinson will not be involved.
Curtis, who created the iconic sitcom alongside Atkinson in the 1980s, shared the news during an appearance on BBC Radio 2 Breakfast show this morning (February 14).
Admitting that he was “nervous” to make the announcement, the writer confirmed that new sketch will see Tony Robinson reprise his role as Baldrick.
“For the first time in 20 years, Baldrick is going to be giving some kind of performance,” he said. “We’re just conspiring about it now, so I think there’s going to be a marvellous, turnip-based thing with Tony Robinson now back in action, so I’m excited about that.”
Asked if Atkinson would also feature in the special, Curtis replied: “No, Rowan’s far too serious to do any of that!”
Last year, Ben Elton, who wrote Blackadders seasons two, three and four, ruled out the possibility of a fully-fledged return, telling Radio Times magazine that he didn’t have an “appetite” to create further seasons of the sitcom.
“We were a great team and I’ve talked so many times about doing something else. Not Blackadder again, I don’t think either of us feel any appetite to do that,” he said.
In 2019, rumours of a fifth season circulated after several original cast members – including Atkinson, Robinson, Stephen Fry and Hugh Laurie – reportedly met to discuss a reboot.
“They were all having a great laugh and they are all old friends. So they just said, ‘Yes, let’s do it’. It is being written now,” a source told The Sun: “Rowan has been saying he is extremely excited.”
The report also claimed that the new instalment of Blackadder would be set in the present-day, with the titular character playing a university lecturer.