BBC comedy script editor rejects Fawlty Towers, 1974
Fawlty Towers is regarded as one of the greatest British Comedies to have ever graced our television screens. The seminal show is seen as the Holy Grail of situation comedy, it’s name bandied around countless production meetings and network pitches ever since…”Think of it as the new Fawlty Towers”
But even a masterpiece of unquestionable quality can have a difficult time getting picked up. In a note to the head of comedy and light entertainment, Ian Main turned down one of Britain’s most famous sitcoms.
After reading a pilot script by John Cleese and his then wife, Connie Booth, clearly unimpressed comedy script editor Ian Main sent this altogether disapproving memo to BBC television’s head of comedy and light entertainment. Luckily Main’s opinion was ultimately ignored by his superiors.
“I’m afraid I thought this one as dire as its title.”
“It’s a kind of “Prince of Denmark” of the hotel world. A collection of cliches and stock characters which I can’t see being anything but a disaster.
It just goes to show…”Everyone gets rejected at some point. Dust yourself down and move on.”