What we'd like to see in NotOutnumbered: the Movie
Andrew Mickel16 March 2012
You might have seen the announcement today that Andy Hamilton and Guy Jenkin, the writers behind Outnumbered, are looking at writing a movie that sort of is going to be like Outnumbered, but isn't going to be like Outnumbered. It IS Outnumbered in the way that a family of two harrassed parents and their kids will take a road trip to Scotland for the grandfather's birthday. It will also be filmed using the same techniques and methods as the show. It ISN'T Outnumbered because it isn't going to actually be Outnumbered.
Anyway, here are some thoughts on NotOutnumbered. Or Numbered, for short.
- With any luck, there won't be any cast cross-fertilisation between Outnumbered and NotOutnumbered. It was just a bit confusing with In The Loop and the Thick Of It, and there's no reason to think it would be different here. The obvious argument against this idea is that the great Outnumbered child actors are going to be hard to replace but we're just going to have a little faith in casting directors to find more children that can actually act (ie, don't get them at a Sylvia Young discount sale).
- Also if you get an entirely new family then that means there's room for a LOLtastic bumping in to the Brockmans in Knutsford Service Station.
- I saw Let Loose in Knutsford Service Station once. Which isn't really relevant here, but it's nice to make sure they don't go forgotten.
- Anyway, casting: it needs parents who are good at playing endearingly baffled, while also being amiable enough that when they're being tediously indulgent of their children 'acting the goat' it's still watchable. (Again, no disrespect to Hugh Dennis and Clare Skinner who are great at it, but it's JUST EASIER FOR ALL CONCERNED.)
- Suggestions: Olivia Coleman, Katherine Parkinson, Darren Boyd, Will Mellor.
- Who we're probably going to get: Catherine Tate and Alexander Armstrong.
- Greg Davies would be good but it would be a nightmare trying to get him in shot in a car all the time.
- Confining it to a road trip to somewhere nice and domestic is wise, as 'taking British sitcom format and putting it in somewhere foreign' is a sorely-tested film format that doesn't always work out amazingly well. The Inbetweeners managed it with pizzazz but was very much the exception. In The Loop was great, but it did have to sacrifice the wonderful Thick of It eye for political dead-ends and Whitehall backstabbing when it was largely set in someone else's political culture. See also: all seventies sitcoms taken on holiday for films/specials. Or that time that EastEnders went to France.
- It also limits the possible arrival of spoof arrogant Americans, which marked the real low in all the seasons of Outnumbered that have been broadcast so far.
- The film is being backed by BBC Films who seem to be on a run at the moment, apart from their absolute inability to make comedy. You have to start reaching back to In The Loop, Tamara Drewe and Made in Dagenham to find any hits. We're not really sure what this means but it seems significant 'somehow'.
Your rating: None
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