BREN’S BRAINS Mrs Brown’s Boys star Brendan O’Carroll lifts lid on inspiration behind iconic character and reveals Hollywood dreams

Brendan also revealed he is teaming up with a British comedy legend for a brand new sitcom

BRENDAN O’Carroll has told how he channels Benny Hill when ­making Mrs Brown’s Boys.

And the Dubliner isn’t worried his feel-good comedy will go out of favour like Benny, whose ITV show was axed at the height of his fame in the 1980s.

Brendan is now starting to crack America with Mrs Brown’s Boys taking off on Britbox over thereCredit: BoC Productions Ltd
Brendan is now starting to crack America with Mrs Brown’s Boys taking off on Britbox over thereCredit: BoC Productions Ltd
Brendan isn't worried about the show going out of style
Brendan isn’t worried about the show going out of style

The 68-year-old added that if some new show comes along and kicks him out “that’s the way ­business goes” — but he thinks Mrs Brown is “peaking” in popularity right now.

Asked if he fears his show getting the chop, Brendan told The Irish Sun: “It doesn’t worry me, because I think we have tapped into that Benny Hill element.

“Comedy got to a stage where it got very clever. It became opinionated and very ­personal instead of being funny!

“And one of the things that made Mrs Brown successful was that we tapped into an audience that comedy left behind . . .  so it doesn’t worry me.

“But if some young buck comes along and has a new show and pushes us off the scene, that’s the way the business goes. That’s the way it’s supposed to be.

“But right now I think Mrs Brown is peaking rather than being the old thing.”

The Finglas man, who lives in Florida most of the year, is now starting to crack America with Mrs Brown’s Boys taking off on Britbox over there.

He plans to do a series of live shows in New York, Boston and Chicago.

He would also like to do a Hollywood movie with his pal, US comic Tyler Perry.

And the star will be tour ­Ireland for the first time in a decade, taking the Mrs Brown D’Live Show to Derry’s ­Millennium Forum, Leisureland in Galway, the INEC in Killarney, Belfast’s SSE Arena and Dublin’s 3Arena next November and December.

Brendan said: “I’m excited because I’m going back to theatres I haven’t played for so long. After the pandemic, people need a laugh and by Jesus, I’m going to give it to them.”

Meanwhile, Brendan has also revealed he is teaming up with British comedy legend Tommy Cannon for a brand new BBC sitcom.

The comedian will play Jimmy in new ­comedy Shedites, which is based on men’s sheds where old fellas like to meet up.

Brendan told The Irish Sun: “No one is going to mistake me for Mrs Brown ’cause I’ll have a beard and a moustache in this.”

But the Dubliner says he’s looking forward to pairing up with comedy star Tommy.

The 85-year-old was one half of northern English comedy duo Cannon and Ball, whose ITV show ran from 1979 to 1988.

He continued in the duo until partner Bobby Ball died, aged 76, in 2020 from breathing problems after testing positive for Covid-19.

Brendan told us: “Tommy plays my best mate in this. We’re doing a pilot for the BBC in April and we’ll see where it goes.”

But the comic said the new sitcom has a serious message about mental health.

Brendan told us: “I’ve been advocating for the BBC to make this show for a long time because as well as being really funny, it ­highlights men’s mental health.

“It’s not something men talk about, but it’s got easier because of the men’s shed movement which has sprung up in UK and Ireland.

“There’s a kitchen, a card table and all that but even more important, men can go there and talk through their problems.”

Shedites is penned by Paddy Houlihan, who plays Dermot in Mrs Brown’s Boys. A pilot will be shot in April in the hope the BBC agrees to a full series.

As a sign of his good fortune, Mrs Brown star Brendan is gifting 1,400 free Christmas dinners to families via Society of St Vincent de Paul.

Asked what happens when his money runs out and he can’t do the festive dinners, Brendan joked: “That was last Thursday.”

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