‘Mr. Bean’ Plays Maigret

Mr. Bean as a serious detective?

See for yourself starting today on pay streamer BritBox as Rowan Atkinson, most famous for his comedic takes as Bean and Blackadder, takes on his first dramatic lead role — as a French detective no less — in Maigret, based on the classic novels and short stories written by Belgium’s Georges Simenon from 1931 to 1972.

The series, set in Paris in the 1950s, was filmed in Budapest, Hungary, with two 90-minute episodes now on BritBox. Another two episodes have already run on Britain’s ITV, which co-owns BritBox with the BBC, but it’s unclear when they’ll debut in the US.

BritBox offers Maigret fans another treat, however, since the service today also launched ITV’s 1992 version of Maigret. Similarly filmed in Budapest, these 12 hour-long episodes allow you to compare Atkinson’s performance with that of Michael Gambon. Here’s episode one:

BritBox subs can even compare Atkinson with himself, since the service also offers him in Blackadder!

Not a BritBox subscriber but still want to see Maigret? The detective has been portrayed in numerous TV and film adaptations over the years, so subscribers to MHz Choice, Filmstruck and Fandor can also stream him!

MHz Choice offers Maigret, a French-language series starring Bruno Cremer that ran for 54 90-minute episodes from 1991 to 2005.

FilmStruck subscribers can stream France’s La Tête d’un homme (1933), with Harry Baur playing Maigret in an adaptation of Simenon’s A Battle of Nerves.

Fandor subscribers can stream a later American version of the same novel, 1950’s The Man on the Eiffel Tower, starring Charles Laughton as Maigret.

Subscribe to Hulu or Amazon Prime? You can’t stream Maigret, but you can see Atkinson as Mr. Bean! (Hulu subscribers can also stream Blackadder.)




About Les Luchter

Les Luchter is a former managing editor of Multichannel News, editor-in-chief of Cable Marketing, and news editor of Broadcast Week.

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