July 4 2015 Latest news:
Wednesday, March 26, 2014
People in Norfolk are toasting news that Alan Partridge will go one better than getting a second series - with a second film.
Comedian Steve Coogan, who plays the fictional radio presenter, had previously dropped hints that there could be a sequel to last summer’s Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa.
And now actor Simon Greenall, better known to viewers as Partridge’s friend Geordie Michael, has dispelled all doubt.
Speaking on the first episode of The Mustard Show, on new Norfolk channel Mustard TV, he confirmed there would be a second film and that it would be set in Norwich.
Asked about the future of Partridge, he said: “There’s going to be another film, and it will be in and around Norwich... It has to be.
“I don’t know when it’s going to happen because Steve [Coogan] is off the back of Philomena... He is doing a lot of other stuff, so when I eventually get time there will be another film.”
Partridge’s first foray onto the big screen was released last year, with a premiere being held at the city’s Anglia Square cinema.
It brought international media attention to the region, and the prospect of another boost to the city has been embraced with open arms.
Trevor Wicks, director of Hollywood Cinema in Anglia Square, where the Alpha Papa premiere was held, said: “That event was one of my highlights of 25 years in the business.
“It was an incredible day and everybody who was there will never forget it.
“I jokingly said we would keep the red carpet for the follow-up and we’ve still got it.
“It’s fantastic news for Norwich and Norfolk and the whole area and we will see what happens.”
Pete Waters, brand manager for Visit Norfolk, said: “If they do make a second Alan Partridge film it would be great news for Norfolk tourism.
“When the first one was mooted we were a little concerned he wouldn’t be particularly reverential about Norfolk, but as soon as we saw it it turned out to be a fantastic fillip for Norfolk tourism.”
Rafiq Turnbull, 40, and his friend Rob Wilkes launched the Anglia Square not Leicester Square campaign to get the Alpha Papa premiere in Norwich.
Mr Turnbull said: “It will be interesting to know where they go with a sequel.
“I would definitely like to see it set around Norwich.
“If it’s set away from here it could lose its appeal.”
And he joked he would be available for a role in the sequel.
Melanie Cook, of Visit Norwich, said: “Alan Partridge created a storm last summer in Norwich, in fact throughout the country.
“Everyone wanted a piece of Norwich!
“The reaction to the film and the premiere campaign Anglia Square not Leicester Square couldn’t have been predicted - it really showed that the people of Norwich had a sense of humour and that they were proud of their city and Alan.
“Press coverage for Norwich was across the media spectrum; broadsheets, tabloids, magazines, radio, TV and online – the story went out to millions nationally and across the globe.
“We cannot wait to welcome Alan back to Norwich and I am sure there are plenty of people that feel the same way.”
Rafiq Turnbull, 40, launched the successful Anglia Square not Leicester Square campaign together with his friend Rob Wilkes.
He said he would definitely watch the second film, and felt producers would need minimal persuasion to throw the premier in Partridge’s home city.
“I’ve never been in a cinema with so many people laughing,” said Mr Turnbull. “It would be difficult to repeat.
“You only have to look at the crowds that were at Anglia Square compared with those in London.
“I know they wouldn’t want to pass up that opportunity again.”
Melanie Cook, of Visit Norwich, said the city is still reaping the benefits of Partridge’s first big screen outing.
The tourist group worked with Norwich City Council to produce a special guided walking tour called Alpha Norwich, which follows the film locations and places Partridge had talked about and visited during the TV series.
Ms Cook said: “The tours sold out and proved so popular that four dates this summer have been scheduled into the 2014 walking tours programme.
“Visitors came from far and wide to take a tour and we expect the same to happen again this year.
“The tours were so well received that Visit Norwich is working with BabyCow Productions to bring a team here to film one of the tours – the film will be used for either video or an iTunes special.”
It has yet to be revealed what the plot of the second film might involve, but it is bound to be “textbook”.
What do you think about news that a second Alan Partridge film will be made? Write (giving your name, address and contact number) to EDPletters@archant.co.uk