Stephen Fry and Hugh Laurie plan to work together again in Hugh’s Golden Globe-winning US drama House, which screens in the UK on Five.
But the multi-skilled 51-year-old admits they still have to find the perfect role for him to play.
“We joke about whether I could play a doctor even crueller, nastier, ruder than House,” says Stephen, who met Hugh at Cambridge University and has since worked with him in Blackadder, Jeeves and Wooster and their sketch show A Bit of Fry and Laurie.
“Or perhaps I should be a better diagnostician than House, but incredibly nice just to annoy him. Or he should have a smarter older brother, because House is based on Sherlock Holmes. Instead of Watson he has Wilson, and he lives in Baker Street, and of course he has a drug addiction, so I could be his brother Microft!”
Stephen adds that he won’t be sporting an accent like Hugh Laurie, whose American drawl initially alienated some English viewers.
“I would be English,” he insists. “I wouldn’t attempt to be American!”
Stephen was set to appear in House before, but due to other commitments he instead appeared in Sky1’s Bones – a forensic drama made by Fox in the same studio.
“I always stay with Hugh whenever I appear in Bones,” says Stephen, who has a regular on-off role as shrink Dr Gordon Wyatt. “They’ve asked me to go back and do series five this year, which will be a pleasure!”
Stephen has just completed filming a documentary series for the BBC, and a new series of Kingdom, which screens in June. He is also about to film another 16 episodes of QI, which screen on BBC Two.
“I may even write a diet book, because I struggled to shed over five stone!” says Stephen, who went from 21 stone to just over 15 stone since the beginning of the year. “It’s mostly through walking and dieting. It’s also certainly helped with my depression!”