He was up for the Leading Actor BAFTA for his role as Stan Laurel in the biopic Stan & Ollie. Steve Coogan, 53, may have lost out on the award, but he had his beloved daughter Clare by his side as he walked the red carpet at London’s Royal Albert Hall on Sunday night for the 72nd British Academy Film Awards.The actor looked dapper in a sharp tuxedo as he posed with Clare, 21, who works for the Labour party.
We get our first glimpse into the studio of Steve Coogan’s gloriously ghastly creation as he partners up on a new show with Susannah Fielding’s Jennie Gresham on new show This Time
Someone rather familiar has slipped out of his Pringle jumper and golfing slacks and put on a proper suit and tie and bright green shirt for his return to the BBC.
Yup, it’s Steve Coogan’s Alan Partridge, back with a glimpse at his new show, This Time, in this first look trailer:
Described by the BBC as a “heady mix” of consumer affairs, news, “highbrow interviews and lightweight froth”, it sees Alan join Jennie Gresham (Susannah Fielding) on the sofa after her usual sidekick – a character called John – is hospitalised after a heart attack. John’s misfortune sees Alan trying to “worm his way back into the BBC”.
“It’s about hanging on,” says Coogan.
As fans know, the last time Alan appeared live on the BBC he managed to shoot a guest dead on chat show Knowing Me, Knowing You with Alan Partridge.
The new series will also see a return for Tim Key as Simon ‘formerly Sidekick Simon’ Denton, who appeared in his Sky Atlantic Partridge shows Mid Morning Matters and the film Alpha Papa. Felicity Montagu will also return as Alan’s assistant Lynn.
Were Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy the greatest comedy duo in film history?
Childlike, unimposing Stan Laurel was a Brit, the lantern-jawed, cartoon-faced son of a theater manager and an actress, born in Lancashire in 1890 and trained in the music hall, where he honed his skills in song, dance and comedy. For a time he worked as Charlie Chaplin’s understudy, and he arrived in the United States on the same ship as Chaplin and broke into film along with him.Oliver Hardy was an oversized, unusually graceful American. Born in Georgia in 1892, Ollie studied music and broke into early film in the East before moving to Los Angeles and being teamed with Laurel by Hal Roach Studios supervising director Leo McCarey (“Duck Soup”). As they say, it was a bowler-hatted match made in comedy heaven.Stan was the sweet-souled, easily upset man-child, while Ollie was the big, angry, pompous bully, who looked oddly like an enormous baby. “Stan & Ollie,” which was directed by Jon S. Baird (“Filth”) and written by Jeff Pope, who co-wrote “Philomena” with Steve Coogan, co-stars Manchester, England-born Coogan and American John C. Reilly, who has had a great run recently and triumphs here, as Stan and Ollie. Continue reading →
British actor, writer, and comedian Steve Coogan was first drawn to the magic and wonder of performing when he was a kid, sitting around the television with his family and watching comedies like Fawlty Towers and Monty Python. It was before the era of VCRs, so the only way to record something you loved was to memorize it in your head and talk about it afterwards. The whole experience left young Steve in awe: “Wow, how great would it be to do a comedy character who people had such affection for and made everyone laugh at the same time? That would be it for me—if I achieved that, I would be happy.”
After spending years doing standup and impressions, Steve got a chance to achieve his dream. He created the massively popular character Alan Partridge, a lovable broadcaster who says all the things that most people think but don’t dare say. Unfortunately, Steve’s anticipated happiness only lasted until he discovered the drawback to success—typecasting. Under the heavy scrutiny of the British media, Steve, who wanted to branch out and try different things, was constantly criticized in the press when he did so. “Alan Partridge became an albatross. I had to find a way to escape from it.”
Escape he did…to America. He took advantage of the fact that the Alan Partridge cult didn’t exist in the States, and he started working on different and interesting projects that spoke to him creatively like Happyish, 24 Hour Party People, and The Trip. But his ultimate escape came when he wrote the critically acclaimed drama Philomena—Oscar nominations have a tendency to shut up the critics.
These days, Steve is taking on a new challenge in the film Stan & Ollie as one-half of the legendary comic duo Laurel and Hardy. For Steve, the film is a real love letter to comedy: “The paradox of good comedy is the more effortless it looks, the harder the work that went into it. It’s like a curse, because people think it’s ephemeral or trivial, but in actual fact, good comedy sheds light on the human condition. That’s what this film is about.”
Steve joins Off Camera to explain why comedy is a universal language, discovering the similarities between writing comedy and drama, and why telling him he’s boring is the most insulting thing you can say to him.