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Tuesday, 3 April, 2001, 18:01 GMT 19:01 UK
Royles move to America
The Royle Family, which is being made for American audiences as The Kennedys
The Royle Family will become The Kennedys
An American version of the hit BBC comedy The Royle Family is being made, with Dave cast as a black character and Randy Quaid playing the layabout dad Jim.

The family have been "Americanised" and there will be "a bit more story" - but the show will not be radically changed, according to producers.

Randy Quaid - best known as Cousin Eddie in the goofball National Lampoon films - will play the couch potato Jim Royle character.

And Dave, the boyfriend of the family's grown-up daughter, will be played by a black actor.

In the British version, Jim Royle, the father of the family who enjoys nothing more than sitting in front of the TV with a can of lager, is played by Ricky Tomlinson.

Jim Royle, played by Ricky Tomlinson
Jim Royle: Will be played by Randy Quaid in US

It will be set in Boston and feature a working-class family that British viewers will be able to recognise, according to Granada, who produce the British version.

"It's been Americanised," Granada's controller of comedy and drama Andy Harries told the Guardian newspaper. "But British viewers would be familiar with a lot of incidents from the first series."

The family will still spend their hours in front of trashy TV shows.

They will be called the Kennedys in a nod to the fact that the Kennedy dynasty have often been referred to as America's royal family. A pilot will be made by CBS next week before deciding whether to turn it into a series.


The British version has picked up numerous awards including best comedy drama at this year's prestigious Royal Television Society Awards.

British programmes have been adapted for American screens with mixed results in the past.

An American version of sitcom One Foot In The Grave, starring Bill Cosby as the Victor Meldrew figure, gained critical success.

Fawlty Towers has been remade for American audiences on several occasions, with none gaining the success of the original, and a second series of the American version of Men Behaving Badly was cancelled half-way through.

Frasier stars Jane Leeves and Peri Gilpin have bought the rights to make a US version of the BBC sitcom The Vicar of Dibley, and plans were announced in 1999 to adapt Only Fools And Horses for the Stateside market.

See also:

21 Mar 01 | TV and Radio
Royal honour for TV's first family
28 Feb 01 | Entertainment
Royle slob turns down nude offer
07 Sep 00 | Entertainment
Royle star lands Hollywood role
15 May 00 | Entertainment
A Royle night at the Baftas
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