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Del Boy: The early years

Posted By Graham Kibble-White On Friday, July 3, 2009 @ 1:32 pm In news | Comments Disabled

The BBC has just announced the long-rumoured commission of an Only Fools and Horses prequel.Oddly titled Sex, Drugs & Rock ‘n’ Chips, here’s the press release…

BBC Comedy Production and Shazam Productions have been commissioned by BBC One to make a new 90-minute comedy drama which focuses on the earlier years of Peckham’s most famous family, the Trotters, it was announced today.

It’s 1960 and Peckham’s answer to Brigitte Bardot, Joan Trotter, is not-so-happily ensconced with the work-shy, Reg Trotter and her teenage son, Derek. But the reappearance of “art connoisseur” Freddie Rodbal, fresh from a 10-year stay as a guest of Her Majesty, is set to ruffle some feathers in the Trotter household.

Sex, Drugs & Rock ‘n’ Chips is written by Only Fools And Horses creator John Sullivan, will be produced by Gareth Gwenlan and executive produced by Mark Freeland for BBC Comedy.

Mark Freeland, Head of Comedy at the BBC, says: “‘Once upon a time in Peckham…’ How incredibly tantalising. Nearly 30 years since Only Fools And Horses hit our screens, now we’ll have the chance to see the vivid, bittersweet drama that underpinned the iconic series.”

A co-production between in-house BBC Comedy and John Sullivan’s production company Shazam Productions, Sex, Drugs & Rock ‘n’ Chips will start shooting, entirely on location in London, in August, for transmission next year.

The comedy drama will centre on the relationships between the glamorous (certain neighbours might say “tarty”) Joan Trotter, Del-boy’s useless father Reg, the safe-cracker, Freddie Robdal and the young Del-boy himself.

And there will be a chance to see the teenage incarnations of some familiar faces including Boycie, Trigger, Denzil and Jumbo Mills.

The Trotter family haven’t yet moved into their flat in Nelson Mandela House, but there’ll be some recognisable settings such as the mean streets of Peckham and the Nag’s Head circa 1960.

Writer John Sullivan says: “Sex, Drugs & Rock ‘n’ Chips will be set in the real Sixties, before The Beatles and Mary Quant made London the coolest place on the planet.”

“The drama will feature South London at its least glamorous, where money was scarce, the staple diet was rock salmon and chips, and the flicks offer the only hint of glamour. And it will give us a bit of an insight into why Del and Rodney turned out they way they did.”

Sex, Drugs & Rock ‘n’ Chips is a co-production between Shazam Productions and BBC Comedy and was commissioned by Jay Hunt, Controller, BBC One and Lucy Lumsden, former Controller, Comedy Commissioning.

So no casting announced yet. Surely we’ll see David Jason playing Reg. But who could be the young Del Boy? Suggestions please…

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