Gold confirm new Morecambe and Wise clip show | Hosted by Sir Lenny Henry © BBC

Gold confirm new Morecambe and Wise clip show

Hosted by Sir Lenny Henry

The Gold TV channel has confirmed that Sir Lenny Henry is to host a new show repackaging old Morecambe and Wise clips, as Chortle reported last month.

Although it may seem that every second of the duo’s on-screen work is endlessly repeated, the producers of Trust Morecambe & Wise say that the four hour-long episodes will feature ‘rarely seen’ footage.

Sir Lenny will screen the clips in front of a studio audience, with the premise being that Eric and Ernie’s sketches can supposedly ‘solve all our problems about relationships or money, teach us how to be cultured and sophisticated and show us how to embrace adventure all over the world’.

Joe McVey, who commissioned the show, said: ‘If you’ve been at a crossroads in your life or simply trying to work out which sofa cushions to get, Trust Morecambe & Wise is what we’ve been waiting for.

‘Every decision you make could be made easier by allowing Eric & Ernie to guide you. Also, it really is a great thrill to claim that I have commissioned Morecambe & Wise at some point in my career and that’s certainly the way I’m going to spin it on my CV.’

Trust Morecambe & Wise will include contributions from comic guests and some of the duo’s co-stars. 

It is being made by Mercury Productions, who made last year’s Saluting Dad’s Army  for Gold and Dad’s Army: The Lost Episodes, which is due to go out later this year.

Sir Lenny once worked with the duo in the 1970s, warming up for their live show in Bournemouth.

In a 2012 interview with Lancashire newspaper The Visitor, he recalled: ‘I went on in the first half and was supposed to be on for 12 minutes.

‘Morecambe and Wise’s audience were brilliant and were keeled over laughing, so I ended up doing 17 minutes. But afterwards, I got a telling off from the stage manager for running over time.

‘Eric saw this from the side door and afterwards, he pulled me to one side and told me not to worry, and said he thought I was brilliant. He told me to do exactly the same amount of time the next night. So I did about 18 minutes the second time!

‘Eric also told to me use his dressing room, said there was beer and everything. He was really good to me.’

Comic Relief co-founder Sir Lenny has also credited Eric and Ernie with sowing the seeds for the star-stuffed Red Nose Day telethons. ‘Think of the glory of all those newsreaders singing There Is Nothing like a Dame. Angela Rippon and the rest of them. Eric and Ernie. 

‘They were the ones who said, "You know the people who you thought did that thing? Well, they do this too."’

Published: 21 Jun 2019

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