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Last Updated: Thursday, 8 June 2006, 12:09 GMT 13:09 UK
Emu set for television comeback
Rod Hull and Emu
Rod Hull and Emu were children's favourites in the 1970s and 80s
Anarchic glove puppet Emu is to return to TV screens, alongside the son of his late creator, Rod Hull.

Toby Hull will bring the wayward bird back to life in a 26-part comedy series, called Emu, to be shown on children's channel CITV next year.

Emu was a TV favourite in the 1970s and '80s, achieving notoriety for attacking host Michael Parkinson while appearing on his chat show.

Mr Hull has performed with Emu since his father's death in 1999.

Chat show hosts be warned - the beak is back
Christopher Pilkington, executive producer

The new programme will be produced by TV company Initial, which is also responsible for BBC shows Fame Academy and Mighty Truck of Stuff.

Executive producer Christopher Pilkington said the show will contain a few surprises.

"Emu will actually, for the first time ever, make a range of sounds that will give you an idea of what he's thinking inside his skull," he said.

The bird will also be freed from Hull's arm, with puppeteers allowing him to move independently.

Mr Pilkington, who worked with Rod Hull for Comic Relief, says he is confident Emu will be loved by a new generation of children.

"Emu is a hero with kids because he pricks the bubble of adult pomposity," he said. "He is the naughty child who does all the things we'd love to do but can't."

"Chat show hosts be warned - the beak is back," he added.

Rod Hull and Emu on Blue Peter
Emu caused chaos wherever he went, including Blue Peter
Rod Hull was given Emu as a prop in the 1960s while he was presenting a children's breakfast programme in Australia.

He adopted the mute puppet for his cabaret act, and brought it to the UK when he returned in 1970.

The double act soon became a fixture of both children's and adult television, with Emu often launching unprovoked attacks on anyone within striking distance.

When Hull met the Queen Mother at the Royal Variety Show in 1972, Emu ate her bouquet.

Hull died in 1999 after falling from the roof of his cottage in Rye, East Sussex, while adjusting his TV aerial.

His son, a trained actor, has since appeared in pantomime with Emu.


SEE ALSO:
Television's crowning moments
24 Aug 99 |  Entertainment
Obituary: The man behind Emu
18 Mar 99 |  UK News
Rod Hull dies in rooftop fall
18 Mar 99 |  Entertainment
Rod Hull's death 'accidental'
05 May 99 |  UK News
Simple farewell for Emu star
26 Mar 99 |  Entertainment


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