ITV1 has announced that Sir Ian McKellen (X-Men, Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit) will star in a new comedy sitcom, Vicious Old Queens, alongside Sir Derek Jacobi (I Claudius, King’s Speech). In addition, both have been brilliant throughout their respective careers in virtually every Shakespeare play that exists.
The six-part series, already penciled in for Friday nights beginning next April, will feature the two big screen legends as elderly gay men living together in London’s Covent Garden. The series will be written by Gary Janetti, executive producer and writer of the long-running American sitcom Will And Grace.
Openly gay, as is Jacobi, Sir Ian McKellen has often said that there are many gay actors at the top of the profession because “…we spent so long pretending to be straight, to be someone else, that eventually we became very good at it“.
This has brilliance written all over it and it doesn’t even transmit until April 2013. Once again, this ups the ante in the newly competitive world of British comedy between the BBC, ITV and Sky and, ultimately, both UK and U.S. audiences will be the beneficiary.