Sorry Miranda fans, but the lady herself says there won’t be a big screen version of her hit sitcom.
There have been rumours of a possible Miranda film ever since the BBC One show was last seen on screen in 2015, when a Christmas special was broadcast.
Its star Miranda Hart told BBC Radio 4 Extra she had been in talks with BBC Films about making a movie.
“I considered it and worked towards writing a script,” she said. “Then I kept thinking, these films never work.”
The comic actress, soon to make her West End theatre debut in Annie, said it was difficult to bring comedies filmed in front of a live audience to cinema-goers.
“The transition from a studio sitcom to a film never works – The Inbetweeners is a perfect example of it working brilliantly, because it was filmic anyway,” said the Call the Midwife star.
“But what are [the characters] doing on location? And we’re not hearing laughs [from the audience], so it’s such a different thing.”
Sitcoms on the big screen
- Dad’s Army (2016) – who do you think you’re kidding? This remake went down like a lead balloon with most film critics although Toby Jones, who played Captain Mainwaring, was praised.
- Absolutely Fabulous (2016) – the long-awaited big screen debut for Edwina and Patsy went down pretty well with audiences and critics.
- Mrs Brown’s Boys D’Movie (2014) – as is often the case, this was a hit at the box office but it got a mauling from reviewers, including the BBC’s Mark Kermode, who called it “an absolute stinker”.
- The Inbetweeners (2011) – a big hit. The comedy, which cost around £3.5m to make, made more than £45m at the box office worldwide.
- Alpha Papa (2013) – Alan Partridge’s transfer from regional TV and radio to the big screen was widely regarded as a success.
- The League of Gentleman’s Apocalypse (2005) – the film, which sees the fictional town of Royston Vasey under threat, got decent if not rave reviews.
In the end, it was Dad’s Army writer Jimmy Perry – who died last October – who influenced Hart’s decision on whether or not the film should go ahead.
She said: “I read that Jimmy Perry randomly wrote this article talking about that transition from studio sitcoms to films and he said ‘I hope Miranda doesn’t do it because what she’s written is a studio sitcom and that’s what it should be’.
“And I thought, well he knows, so I’m going to honour that.
“So he inadvertently told me not to do the film. And then I wrote what was the film script for the finales… [where] they split up and then got back together and the beautiful galloping along the beach on a horse. It would have been a good movie story, but I’ve done it.”
But all is not lost for fans of the show – which saw an average 9.51 million people tune in for the last instalment – as Hart says the next stage in Miranda’s life could still be brought to screens.
“I think you could do married life as a sitcom, with Miranda and Gary and see how they’re getting on.”
You can hear the full interview on Miranda Hart: From Hampshire to Hollywood on BBC Radio 4 Extra on 20 May, 09:00 – 12:00 BST.