Ally McBeal to make telly return after more than 20 years | The Sun

CLASSIC Nineties comedy drama Ally McBeal is returning with its zany mix of legal antics and personal crisis.

US channel ABC is reviving the Emmy-winning series with the new focus on a young black woman.

She is the daughter of Ally’s old roommate Renee Raddick who joins the same Boston law firm, Cage & Fish.

But as yet, reclusive Calista Flockhart has yet to sign up to reboot the title role that made her famous.

She is said to be waiting to see a script before agreeing to join in.

But the show’s original creator David E. Kelley has given his blessing to the new writer, Karin Gist, who was behind US medical drama Grey’s Anatomy.

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A source said: “There has been talk of reviving Ally McBeal for years, as the central premise is so desirable to modern audiences.

"It’s the perfect female-driven character drama, really.

“Frankly, it was always ahead of its time, so execs see a reboot as a total no-brainer.

“They are desperate for Calista to jump on board but hope the scripts will convince her to sign up.

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“It’s likely a big streamer will bite ABC’s hands off for the rights to air the new series globally.”

Ally McBeal ran between 1997 and 2002 on Fox in the US and Channel 4 in the UK, and followed the professional and personal life of the show’s heroine.

It won the Emmy for Outstanding Comedy Series in 1999 and launched the careers of many big names, including Lucy LiuL and Jane Krakowski and is credited with helping to revive the career of Hollywood leading man Robert Downey Jr.

Its fourth season also featured a recurring role from the late Anne Heche as Melanie West.

But whether executives plan to revive the bizarre dancing baby is another conversation altogether.

ALEX TO PILE ON LAUGHS

ALEXANDRA MARDELL has barely had time to adjust to life away from the ups and downs of Coronation Street.

But just three months after leaving the soap, she has landed an exciting new role alongside Sherlock’s Amanda Abbington.

Alexandra, who played Emma Brooker in the soap, will appear in new ITV comedy The Family Pile.

She won a British Soap Award for Best Newcomer in 2019, despite originally only signing on for six months to play Steve McDonald’s secret daughter.

The new six-parter, which is filmed in Liverpool, will follow four sisters who have just lost their parents.

And it doesn’t take Sherlock to work out that with Alexandra and Amanda on board, it is likely to be a hit.

The comedy is due to hit our screens next year.

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AFTER five hit series, ITV2 sitcom Plebs will be returning for an 85- minute feature-length special to say a fond farewell.

In Soldiers Of Rome, Marcus, Grumio, Jason and Aurelius are sent to fight on the front line for a cause they don’t believe in.

It will premiere on ITVX later this year.

MORE OF MARRIED MAYHEM

I’M not sure whether it is even possible – but it looks like Married At First Sight bosses want even more drama this series.

E4 has come up with another new twist to ensure the newlyweds are tested.

This year’s series – which returns on Monday – will include a “couples retreat” holiday.

The show’s dating and relationship expert Mel Schilling said: “We have really upped the ante this year.

“We take them on a couple’s retreat and it is a different set of rules.

“It really brings issues, that are bubbling to the surface, to the fore in quite a dramatic way.

“And we’ve got new couples we introduce half- way through the show – it really throws a spanner into the works.

“It confronts the couples and shakes up the social dynamic.”

Love Island’s Casa Amor will have nothing on this.

JIMMY IN BITS AND PIECES

AS a footballer, the biggest concern about your “bits and pieces” probably involves injuring them in a nasty tackle.

But ex- Premier League player Jimmy Bullard, circled, has problems with another sort – when it comes to kitchen gear.

Tonight at 9pm, BBC One viewers will see him enter the Celebrity MasterChef kitchen.

He said: “It’s bigger than I thought! All the bits were all about. I was a bit worried. You know, when you get used to your own bits and pieces.”

He is joined by The Wire’s Clarke Peters, TV host Kirsty Gallacher, Birds Of A Feather’s Lesley Joseph and actor Richard Blackwood.

AMANDA ROCKS

AMANDA HOLDEN’s seemingly endless summer rumbles on with a new string of bikini pics.

But it’s not all play for the Britain’s Got Talent judge, as she’s actually hard at work.


She has continued to film scenes for her new travel show alongside Alan Carr.

Amanda and Alan: The Italian Job sees the pair journey around the country experiencing local life.

They are also grafting to turn a rundown property into a holiday home in Sicily.

That’s along with all the sun- bathing, of course.

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FANS of basketball will remember the US team’s fightback during the 2008 Olympics – four years after their shock loss in Athens. Players including Dwyane Wade and Lebron James reflect on their history- making run in The Redeem Team, released October 7 on Netflix.

JOAN: ALL POWER TO ALEXIS

DYNASTY’S Alexis Carrington was the ultimate super-bitch.

But Joan Collins reckons her Eighties soap character represents far more than that.

She said: “It’s utterly ridiculous that powerful, resilient women are portrayed as dangerous, whereas in my experience it’s the predatory men who are the real threat.”

Joan doesn’t have to contend with that in real life – and went on to gush about her husband Percy Gibson.

Chatting to Saga magazine, Joan added: “I’m so lucky, he takes care of everything.

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