How did this escape my notice?
Evidently, the BBC is in the midst of recording a third series of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy!
Following the not terribly accurate news in yesterday’s Daily Mail, I have finally been given the nod to reveal the news that I’ve been sitting on for the past few months – the Tertiary Phase is go! The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy will return to BBC Radio 4 next Spring in a six-part adaptation of Life, the Universe and Everything, to be followed by four-part adaptations of So Long and Thanks for All the Fish and Mostly Harmless which will run as a single eight-week block in the autumn. The programme will be written and directed by Dirk Maggs – Douglas’ choice, as detailed in chapter 36 of my book – with John Langdon as script editor and Bruce Hyman and Helen Chattwell as producers. It will be an Above the Title production for the BBC.
Six surviving cast members will recreate their roles: Simon Jones, Geoffrey McGivern, Mark Wing-Davey, Susan Sheridan, Stephen Moore and the uncredited series announcer, John Marsh. William Franklyn will be the new voice of the book, and Richard Griffiths will play Slartibartfast. Chris Langham, who was Arthur on stage, will be Prak and other roles will be taken by Toby Longworth (Wowbagger), Roger Gregg (Eddie), Andy Taylor (Zem), Rupert Degas (Judiciary Pag LIVR), Frederick Treves (Hactar), Dominic Hawksley, Joanna Lumley(!) andMichael Fenton-Stevens, with cricket commentators Fred Trueman and Henry Blofeld as themselves. Paul ‘Wix’ Wickens and Philip Pope will provide the music. Best of all, Douglas Adams always wanted to play Agrajag himself, and since the BBC own the rights to the old Dove Audio unabridged readings – he will do!
The six episodes of the Tertiary Phase – H2G3 for short! – will be recorded in London this month, and will be broadcast at 6.30pm on Tuesdays from 17th February 2004; the ‘Quadrenary’ and ‘Quintessential’ Phases will be in the same slot from 14th September. Radio 4 is of course available over the net so folk outside the UK will be able to hear the show, which will be subsequently released on CD though no details are yet available. Exclusive in-depth coverage of the recording, including interviews with cast and crew, will be available to members of ZZ9 Plural Z Alpha in forthcoming issues of the club magazine, Mostly Harmless.
I am SO stoked about this… and then new Dr. Who in 2005… thank goodness the BBC is realizing the money to be made from we geeks.