Paul Whitehouse confirms Only Fools and Horses musical
8 October 2018 - 12:00 PM

Paul Whitehouse confirms Only Fools and Horses musical

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Paul Whitehouse has confirmed an "Only Fools and Horses" musical is heading to the West End.

The 60-year-old actor will take on the role of Grandad in the show, which will take place at London's Theatre Royal Haymarket from February 2019, with Tom Bennett in the role of Derek "Del Boy" Trotter, and Ryan Hutton will star as Rodney Trotter.

Paul - who has co-written the musical with Jim Sullivan, the son of the late, great "Only Fools" creator John Sullivan - said: "This was the last project that John Sullivan was working on when he died - he was just starting to develop "Only Fools" as a musical.

"So when writing it, Jim and I have remained very faithful to the feel and scripts of the TV series, but also highlight some contemporary issues."

"Only Fools and Horses: The Musical" will incorporate some fan favourite moments from the classic TV show - which first aired in September 1981 and spanned seven series, 64 episodes and 16 specials - but Paul admits he and Jim are "conscious" of the programme's legacy.

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He added: "We're very conscious of the "Only Fools" legacy and that it's so fondly remembered by people of almost all ages, so we've tried to incorporate everyone's favourite moments from the TV shows and of course, all the great characters - but this time it's with songs."

The production will feature musical contributions from Chas and Dave - who recently lost one half of the duo, Chas Hodges, when he passed away aged 74 - and Paul has revealed Chas and John wrote a song together to kick off the project.

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Speaking on Radio X, he said: "He [John] did some prep on it and he wrote one song with Chas Hodges, who tragically died recently. So, the project was left up in the air, and Jim wanted to honour his dad's final wish.

"They wrote me in, the fools, and we've been working on it for the last two-and-a-half years off and on.

"It's daunting, but quite an honour. I've written a couple of songs with Chas."

"Only Fools and Horses: The Musical" will be directed by Caroline Jay Ranger and several of the classic characters from the series, Raquel, Denzil, Mickey Pearce, Nags Head landlord Mike, and the dreaded Driscoll Brothers will all be in the musical, which will feature 20 songs.

Sir David Jason played Del Boy in the original TV show with Nicholas Lyndhurst as Rodney, and Lennard Pearce portrayed Grandad.

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