Dawn French reviving 'Vicar Of Dibley' for Christmas lockdown special

File photo dated 15/10/20 of Dawn French who will reprise her role in The Vicar Of Dibley for a Christmas special, the BBC has announced.
Dawn French will reprise her role in The Vicar Of Dibley for a Christmas special. (PA)

Dawn French is to don her dog collar once again to star in a Christmas lockdown special of hit sitcom The Vicar of Dibley.

The 63-year-old actor and comedian will record a series of three 10 minute sermons as Geraldine Granger giving her outlook on lockdown life to lift the spirits of Dibley fans this festive season.

French said: “Back in the dog collar, back in Dibley and back on your telly at Xmas. I couldn’t be happier. Bless you.”

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Three 10-minute episodes will air weekly after repeats of classic episodes of the hit BBC Sitcom, before being shown as a 30-minute compilation over the Christmas period.

(Emma and Dawn appearing in The Vicar of Dibley. (BBC)
Dawn French and the late Emma Chambers in The Vicar of Dibley. (BBC)

The Vicar of Dibley creator and writer Richard Curtis said: “Like every village in the country, there’s been a lot happening in Dibley this year – and Dawn has got a lot to say about it.”

Geraldine will be seen delivering sermons to her parishioners over video chat service Zoom during lockdown, post lockdown and pre-another-lockdown.

The new episodes will see Geraldine get help from Hugo Horton (James Fleet) as well as local primary school children, as the vicar discusses “all the important topics” including how to make home-made wine.

The Vicar of Dibley ran for two seasons between 1994 and 1998, and produced 10 special episodes as well as six Comic Relief offerings.

LONDON - JANUARY 13:  Comedian and actress Dawn French joins hundreds of female clergy from England and Wales in a fight against poverty with Christsin Aid on January 13, 2005 in London, England. The campaign group brings together around 150 charities, unions and faith groups to challenge world leaders to deliver trade justice, debt cancellation and more and better aid for the world?s poorest countries. (Photo by Bruno Vincent/Getty Images)
Dawn French has played the female vicar since 1994. (Getty Images)

French revived her character during the first national lockdown in April this year for charity TV fundraiser The Big Night In.

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There have been some sad losses to the original cast in recent years as Frank Pickle actor John Bluthal died in November 2018 at the age of 89.

Meanwhile, Alice Tinker star Emma Chambers died suddenly in February of the same year after suffering a heart attack at the age of 53.

Roger Lloyd-Pack who played Owen Newitt died at the age of 69 in 2014 while Letitia Cropley actor Liz Smith, whose character died in the 1996 Easter special, passed away in 2016 aged 96.

Series one of The Vicar Of Dibley is available to watch on BBC iPlayer.

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