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Carry On Laughing (ITV 1975, Sid James, Hattie Jacques)

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Comedy anthology series Carry on Laughing was an offshoot of the Carry On films, it was an attempt to address the films’ declining cinema attendance by transferring the franchise to television. Many of the original cast members were featured in the series.

Carry on Laughing ran for two seasons, the first for six half-hour episodes and the second for seven episodes. The episode Orgy and Bess featured the final Carry On performances of both Sid James and Hattie Jacques.

The TV series is not as widely known as the original films, which – by contrast – are broadcast regularly on British television. It is also considered much less successful at transferring the established formula to the small screen than the Carry On Christmas specials.

The series was conceived after the departures of two long-serving Carry On contributors: writer Talbot Rothwell and actor Charles Hawtrey. Furthermore, Kenneth Williams declined to appear in the series. Other Carry On regulars only appeared in a minority of episodes: Sid James in only the first four, Hattie Jacques in only one; and Bernard Bresslaw appeared only in the second series.

In the absence of Rothwell, other writers were brought in. Lew Schwarz and experienced Carry On writer Dave Freeman each wrote six, while Barry Cryer and Dick Vosburgh penned Orgy and Bess.

production details
UK | ITV – ATV | 13×25 minutes | 1975

Executive Producer: Peter Rogers
Producer: Gerald Thomas

cast
Jack Douglas
Barbara Windsor
Kenneth Connor
Joan Sims
David Lodge
Sid James
Bernard Bresslaw
Peter Butterworth
Brian Osborne
Norman Chappell

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