Three Dad’s Army episodes are missing from the archives but don’t panic, they are now being remade by the BBC.
Permission to speak, Sir Ian Lavender is about the only surviving member of the old guard in the Home Guard sitcom, so who will fill the actors’ shoes?
Stupid boy! Naturally, there will be a new cast. So fall in…
Captain Mainwaring: He will be played by Kevin McNally, 62, best known as Joshamee Gibbs in the Pirates of the Caribbean films.
He replaces Arthur Lowe, who died in 1982, aged 66. Lowe served in the Middle East during the Second World War, becoming a sergeant.
A new cast will star in the remakes
(Image: Daily Mirror/BBC)
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McNally said: “I have been asked to double for Captain Mainwaring and daunting as that may be, I accept the responsibility. I look forward to leading the Walmington-on-Sea Home Guard.”
Private Godfrey: Bernard Cribbins, 90, who takes on this role, did National Service and saw action in Palestine in 1947 and 1948. He said: “What a way to start the New Year. Back in khaki just like I was in 1947.”
Godfrey, a “conchie” in the sitcom, was originally played by Arnold Ridley, who was injured in close-quarter battle in the First World War.
He was medically discharged in 1916 but joined up again in the Second World War. He died in 1984, aged 88.
Sergeant Wilson: Robert Bathurst, 61, David in Cold Feet, steps into the role played by John Le Mesurier, who died in 1983, aged 71.
Bathurst said: “I’ve played soldiers before but find I handle guns with all the bloodcurdling authority of Sergeant Wilson. I look forward to playing him.”
Le Mesurier’s rented home was hit by a German bomb in 1940, destroying all his possessions. A few days later he reported for basic training with the Royal Armoured Corps.
The new episodes will be based on the original scripts by David Croft, left, pictured here with Jimmy Perry and American television and film actress Goldie Hawn
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Private Pike: The youngest in the platoon will be played by Tom Rosenthal, 31, star of Friday Night Dinner.
Ian Lavender was 22 when he started as “Stupid Boy” Pike in the original, and is now 72.
Lance Corporal Jones: Kevin Eldon, 59, who had his own sketch show It’s Kevin, steps into the role made famous by Clive Dunn. He was 47 when he began playing a character who looked more than 20 years older. He died in 2012, aged 92.
Private Walker: Mathew Horne, 40, takes over as the black marketeer from James Beck, who died in 1973, aged 44.
Private Frazer: David Hayman, 70, stands in as the gloomy Scot for John Laurie, who died in 1980, aged 83.
The lost episodes – The Loneliness of the Long-Distance Walker, A Stripe for Frazer and Under Fire – were originally shown 50 years ago.
They will be remade using the original scripts by Jimmy Perry and David Croft and be screened later this year on Gold.
Actress Goldie Hawn presented Croft and Perry with a Writers’ Guild of Great Britain Award for their show in 1970.
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