‘Horrible Histories’: Series 5 and movie news

Members of the cast and crew of CBBC’s Horrible Histories have revealed information regarding the next series of the hit show and plans for a film.

Present doing the Masterclass session at the Media Guardian Edinburgh International Television Festival yesterday were producer Caroline Norris, actor Simon Farnaby, actress Martha Howe-Douglas and historical consultant Greg Jenner. Hosting the panel was self-confessed uber-fan and comedian, Al Murray.

The Pub Landlord was keen to know if BBC compliance was ever an issue for the award-winning series, to which Norris replied, “We had an argument about Cleopatra’s suicide. They said ‘You can’t show suicide,’ and I said, ‘Well, I can’t change history, that’s what happened.'”

Moving onto the future, the team teased what’s coming up in the next batch of 13 episodes, currently in the process of being written and researched. In Series 5 we can expect to see: the writer of the fables, Aesop (“thrown off a cliff for arguing with people”), Charles Dickens, Augustus, more Churchill and “Lord Byron in a sort of Twilight spoof”.

On the song front, inspiration continues to come with the promise of Joan of Arc as Jessie J (“because of the fringe”), a Rosa Parks “Motown” song and Norris’ revelation of “We’re doing a Smiths song. Charles Dickens as Morrissey.”

CultBox asked the panel about the possibility of a big screen version of Horrible Histories, to which producer Caroline Norris stated positively: “We are trying to make one, yes. It’s currently in negotiation, we’re trying to sort out the rights which are quite complicated. There’s a lot of conversations to be had. The ambition is certainly there to try and make a film. So hopefully, hopefully, hopefully.”

Series 5 is due to air on CBBC in 2013.

> Buy the Complete Series 1-3 boxset on Amazon.

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