'Absolutely Fabulous' to Return to BBC1

Jennifer Saunders and Joanna Lumley to film three new episodes of the iconic sitcom this summer.


LONDON -- Jennifer Saunders and Joanna Lumley will reprise their roles as the champagne-guzzling dysfunctional celebrity PRs Patsy and Edina, in three new episodes of Absolutely Fabulous, due to be filmed later this summer for BBC1.

The iconic 90s sitcom also featured a young Jane Horrocks as ditzy assistant Bubbles, and Julia Sawalha as Edina's studious and frumpy daughter Saffy. Both are set to reappear in the new episodes.

Though the comedy poked fun at the hard-drinking "career" publicity agents, it also provided a rare all-female written and presented comedy that delivered mass audiences -- as well as propelling the phrase "crack open the Bolly darling" (a reference to a fondness for Bollinger champagne) into the national vernacular.

The hugely successful show ran for five series on BBC1 until 1996 and will return later at the end of the year, a BBC spokeswoman confirmed. "We are just putting the final touches to the deal," she said.

Lumley told Hello! Magazine that the popular format was on its way back but that Saunders had yet to begin working on the script.

"In late August I start filming on three episodes of Absolutely Fabulous, which we are all ecstatic about," added Lumley. "Jennifer has been so busy writing Uptown Downstairs Abbey for Comic Relief and also Spice Girls: The Musical, I don't think she's started the script."