Two months after our last update on how things were going with Kelsey Grammer‘s return as Dr. Frasier Crane in Paramount+’s revival of the “Cheers” spinoff, Frasier (more on that below), we have our first casting news to pass along. First reported exclusively by Variety, Nicholas Lyndhurst (Only Fools and Horses, Goodnight Sweetheart) will star opposite Grammer in the role of Alan Cornwall. Here’s a look at how the character is officially described: “Frasier’s old college buddy turned university professor. British, boozy, and larger than life, Alan has an intellect on par with Frasier’s—if only he ever felt like using it. Alan’s mischievous streak might be just what Frasier could use to shake up his routine, while Frasier’s thoughtful guidance might help Alan find some of the direction he’s been missing in his own life.”
“We start rehearsals in February. We’ve been working on it, honestly for about six or seven years. It’s been on the slow burner. We were like, ‘This is not a bad idea. Maybe this is a good idea,” Grammer revealed during an interview with PEOPLE back in November 2022. During the interview, Grammer also confirmed that David Hyde Pierce would not be reprising his role as Frasier’s brother, Niles Crane. “David basically decided he wasn’t really interested in repeating the performance of Niles,” Grammer revealed.
In retrospect, Grammer says that the move ended up working out for the project. “In a very funny way, it just took us to a new place, which was what we originally wanted to do anyway, which was a Fraser third act. It’s an entirely new life for him,” he explained. But as much as Frasier may be heading into a new chapter of his life, the series will respect what came before it. “He’s [Frasier Crane] our brave little soldier that continues on in life, finding new challenges and a new love and new people and a new city and stuff like that,” Grammer said. “I’m really very excited about it, and we’ll certainly always honor the past. We have to honor the fact that John Mahoney died and that Martin is no longer with us. We’ll be dealing with that for sure.” But as much as the show will be “responsive about the fact that there was a brother and such,” Gammer makes it clear that the focus will be on “new friendships – and some new twists and turns he didn’t know were still in there.”
Set to both star in and executive produce, the new series finds Frasier off to a different city with new challenges to face, new relationships to forge, and an old dream or two to finally fulfill (though original cast members are expected to make guest appearances, as was the case between Cheers and Frasier). The series is being developed by writers Chris Harris (How I Met Your Mother) and Joe Cristalli (Life In Pieces), who will executive produce alongside Grammer, Tom Russo, and Jordan McMahon. CBS Studios will produce the series in association with Grammer’s Grammnet NH Productions.