Fresh from the unexpected success of asking Robert Llewellyn for an interview, here is an equally exclusive Norman Lovett interview.
Could you tell us about some of the projects you were involved in before Red Dwarf, on radio and television?
I was doing stand-up which is how I started in the business. TV appearances came from that and I played a spoof ‘floor manager’ in DON’T MISS WAX on Ch4 for 2 series before Red Dwarf came along.
Have you ever considered writing an Autobiography covering your time during Red Dwarf or even in the periods before and after?
I think if I was offered the chance I would love to because I have a few interesting stories about my time in Red Dwarf plus other programmes I was involved with such as my own series I, LOVETT.
You auditioned for the part of Rimmer originally. In retrospect do you think you would have preferred this part or are you pleased you had the chance to make the Holly character your own?
There was no way I could have created a Rimmer and obviously Holly was perfect for me. Although in a perfect world I would have liked to have played Rimmer because I’d have been rich.
When you first began working on Red Dwarf did you realise the show would carry on for such a long time?
I didn’t think it would go to 8 series but I knew it was a funny and very original show and would do well. (Honest)
How enjoyable are the cast of Red Dwarf to work with and how does working with comedy actors compare to working on more serious acting projects?
It was very competitive but that helped in many ways. We got on well and had lots of laughs most of the time. Working on other serious projects could never be as interesting or as entertaining as working on Red Dwarf.
What would you say is your finest memory from your time working on Red Dwarf?
There were lots but the best was when the writers said there was to be a Holly episode (Queeg) but wouldn’t let me read the script until the last moment.
Have you ever thought about going into writing or even co-writing an episode of Red Dwarf as Rob Llewellyn did?
I created and co-wrote my series so I’ve done a bit of writing but in series 7 a lot of different writers were used and apparently they found writing SciFi pretty difficult. I’d love to try though.
We have heard that Red Dwarf: The Movie is due to start filming towards the end of the year in Australia. Can you confirm any more information about this?
I’m afraid I can’t.
If the Movie is a success how would you feel about a 9th series or even a second Movie? Do you feel there will ever be a time when you will want to call it day with Red Dwarf?
I’ve already done that and still went back so I really don’t know when it will all end.
How do you enjoy the Red Dwarf fan conventions and do you have any lasting memories from these weekends?
I enjoy these events and I get really amused when people take sneaky photos of you as they walk by and you know the picture will be blurred. Just ask and I will pose for you every time.
At this years Dimension Jump one of your daughters, Kitty, performed an excellent 10 minute set before your own stand up performance. Is comedy something Kitty is interested in breaking into and does your other daughter, Lilly, have any ambitions for show biz after her role in the last Harry Potter film? More to the point, how do you feel about your daughters following in your footsteps?
They are naturals and love doing it. If they do end up in the business they will overtake me in no time.
How did you enjoy your experience with recording commentary for Series I and II and would you ever contribute to some extra bonus material for future DVDs if the opportunity was presented to you?
It was great and yes I would perhaps do some stand-up.
How did you enjoy getting back on a tour with your recent stand up show and does stand up compare with your acting work?
I’m still trying to improve on both and enjoy them in different ways.
After your recent stand up run in the south, do you think you will ever mount a full nation wide stand up tour?
I’m going to do some shows with Phil Cool next year all going well.
Do you have any other acting work lined up in the near future? Or have you been working on anything since the finish of Red Dwarf VIII?
There’s an excellent series called Seven Wonders Of The Industrial World going out at the moment on BBC2 every thursday and on 2nd october you will spot me in the programme called ‘The Sewer King’ in which I play a character called William Farr.