AN ACTOR who worked with Rik Mayall says he feels “privileged” to have met the comic legend.
The star of The Young Ones and Bottom, who died on Monday, starred opposite Dave Dutton, aged 66, in an audio comedy called ‘The Last Hurrah’, which was released two years ago.
In the comedy, Mr Dutton, from Atherton, played a ventriloquist named Mr Bonjour Hellfire, who is best friends with Mayall’s character Elton, the world’s last remaining snowman.
The comedy, which was released in a series of six half-hour episodes, was produced in Plymouth.
Mr Dutton has fond memories of his time working with Mayall, saying he was a ‘fair professional’.
He said: “We seemed to hit it off straight away — we chatted a lot and went out for meals together.
“It was a joy and a privilege to work with Rik. He was everything you’d want in a great actor and comedian.
“When we were recording, I used to have to bite on my fist because he was so funny. I had tears in my eyes from laughing.
“Rik was the part — he was as you saw him on TV.”
Mr Dutton recalls one particular moment which summed up Mayall’s stellar sense of humour.
He added: “I was out with Rik and one of the scriptwriters for ‘The Last Hurrah’, when Rik started shouting at some policeman, like the anarchical man he was.
“He was disgruntled when they didn’t take him on — it was typical Rik.”
Mr Dutton learnt of Mayall’s death when he was watching TV and said he is still struggling to take in the news.
He added: “I saw the ticker at the bottom of the screen and I stared at it for a few seconds. It hit me like a hammer blow to the heart.
“I feel desperately sorry for his family and everyone who knew him well.”
Mayall, who is best remembered for his performances in The Young Ones and Bottom, died at his home in Barnes, South London.
Police are not treating his death as suspicious and his wife Barbara — who is understood to have found his body at the couple’s home — has said she had no idea what had caused his death and would have to wait for a coroner's report.
Celebrities, including his writing partner Adrian Edmondson, have paid tribute to Mayall.
His daughter, Bonnie, wrote on Facebook: “My dad was loved not only by my family, but by many many others. We will never forget him and neither will the world.
"R.I.P to the man, the myth, the legend - my wonderful, generous, foul mouthed and hysterical father. My idol now and forever.
"We love you daddy."