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Still Game for panto: Craiglang stars Jane McCarry, Mark Cox and Sanjeev Kohli hit the streets to keep festive traditions alive

© BBC/Alan PeeblesNavid played by Sanjeev Kohli and Isa played by Jane McGarry in Still Game.
Navid played by Sanjeev Kohli and Isa played by Jane McGarry in Still Game.

Lockdown forced them to cancel their annual panto – but did that stop the stars of Still Game from delivering a festive treat for kids? Oh no, it didn’t.

Jane McCarry, Mark Cox and Sanjeev Kohli have been filming a panto to ensure that disappointed fans still get their festive fix. And rather than thinking that their hopes for panto 2020 were … behind them … the trio decided to save the festive tradition by filming a special story around the Beacon Theatre in Inverclyde.

The Still Game favourites were joined by River City’s Jimmy Chisholm and actors Kim Allan and Lee Samuel this week in Greenock, after their four-week run of Cinderella was cancelled due to the pandemic.

Instead, they took to the streets around the Clydeside Theatre, as well as its deserted auditorium, to film The Magical Beacon Stone. Penned by writer and director David Goodall, it’s a story about the old panto tradition of good prevailing over evil, with Jimmy Chisholm playing the baddie.

© Andrew Cawley
Still Game actor Jane McCarry

Jane McCarry said: “He wants to make all the kids work in factories and is out to steal the very magical Beacon Stone. I play Auntie Bella, and I’m out to get it back for the people of Inverclyde.”

The pantomime film will be made available for free to schools and care homes around the area, before being released to the wider public.

Jane continued: “This would have been our fifth year and it’s a way for us to support the people who have supported us all these years. We feel such a part of the community when we do the panto every year.”

The show must go online as lockdown theatres turn panto into pixels