Phill Jupitus appears in Mel Brooks classic The Producers

Phill Jupitus as Franz Keibkind in The Producers
Phill Jupitus as Franz Keibkind in The Producers

Comedian Phill Jupitus is part of the all-star cast that will appear in a new touring production of the classic Mel Brooks film The Producers.

He appears in the show alongside fellow comedian Jason Manford and dancer Louie Spence in the show coming to Milton Keynes Theatre from March 30 to April 4.

Impoverished by a string of flops, New York producer Max Bialystock recruits downtrodden accountant Leo Bloom to help him pull off Broadway’s greatest scam. Together they aim to produce the worst show in history and run away to Rio with millions, but they learn that show business can always find a way to kick you in the teeth.

The musical features a riotous mix of eccentric characters and the all-time classic song Springtime For Hitler.

Phill plays the part of Franz Liebkind, a writer who creates the musical which the producers of the show seek to buy in order to defraud investors. We talked to Phill as rehearsals for the show are just getting underway.

He said: “The rehearsals are going to well. It is an incredible cast that we have put together for the show.

“Corey English, who plays Max Bialystock, is fantastic and Jason Manford as Leo Bloom is one of the nicest and funniest people to work with.

“Then there is working alongside Louie Spence. The man is just a rare combination of machismo and testosterone. Given that I am a rather portly man, there is a lot of singing and dancing in the show and that has been something to get to use.

“But you respect the chance to perform the work of Mel Brooks who was an absolute genius.”

It will be a return to the theatre for Phill who was there for the opening weeks of the venue in 1999.

He said: “I was there for the recording of I’m Sorry I Haven’t A Clue (Radio 4 show) and I am sure they said it was the first week the theatre had been opened. I’m sure the presenter said we are coming to you from this brand new venue.

“It will be a lovely to return and perform there.”

Phill is probably most familiar for his appearance on TV panel shows such as Never Mind the Buzzcocks and QI. He has been on Buzzcocks since it began in 1996.

Speaking about the music quiz, he said: “I never thought that it would be going nearly 20 years later, I thought it would be going maybe two or three years.

“We are not guaranteed to have another series. Even now, I don’t know if there will be another series of Buzzcocks.

“What normally happens is there a conversation in May about whether it will be renewed and from there we will make another series as long as it is popular.

“Even I have changed over the course of the years.

“I think QI really changed the way panel shows are looked at; it is a lot more relaxed and just enables people to be funny.

“I think doing QI has changed the way I approached the recording of Buzzcocks.

“I’m not sure what I will be doing after this. I will see what comes along and wait to see if there is another series of Buzzcocks.”

Tickets for The Producers can be booked by calling the box office on 0844 871 7652 or visit www.atgtickets.com/miltonkeynes.