BBC Films have this week announced that Life on the Road, a new motion picture written and directed by British comedy icon Ricky Gervais, will enter production in 2015. Branded as a cinematic spin-off from the Beeb's hit business-themed TV series The Office, the film is all but guaranteed to star Gervais as well, since its central protagonist is none other than David Brent.
Chances are - if the character's recent flawed attempts at kick-starting a musical career in the Comic Relief telethon and various YouTube sketches are any indication, at least - that Brent's fortunes won't be particularly notable in Life's early stages. Whereas most screenplay writers would envision this downbeat starting point as a prime opportunity to depict a rags-to-riches narrative, though, part of what makes Gervais' projects (both televisual and cinematic) so damn refreshing is their enduring dedication to subverting our expectations, a trait which we truly hope will carry through to this long-awaited continuation.
As a worthy substitution for casting and/or concrete production details, BBC Films have even unveiled the first plot synopsis for Life. The tantalising précis reads as follows: "We find out what Brent is doing now and what's happened in the last 15 years since his redundancy from his beloved Wernham Hogg [the Slough-based company by which Brent was originally employed in The Office]. He's a sales rep now, selling cleaning products up and down the country, but has never really given up on his dream of being a rock star. Brent is followed on his self-financed UK tour. [...] He [eventually] has to take a few weeks off work and cash in a couple of pensions because the session musicians in the band are costing him more than he's getting in ticket sales. Tragic."
Stay tuned to On-Screen for more details on Life of the Road's production and release schedule as they arrive on the web in the coming months!