The League of Gentlemen have revealed how they declined the offer of a new series as they were offended by how the BBC only seemed interested after a spike in fan interest.
"Conspicuously on the back of the interest in the fact that we were doing those charity sketches together, the BBC asked us, 'Would you like to do some more League of Gentlemen?'" Shearsmith told Digital Spy.
"We said no - not that way round. Not if the only reason is that you [now] think people might be interested."
The comedian's comments come after he teased a League reunion late last year, which ultimately turned out to be for live shows only.
Shearsmith did not rule out a new TV series altogether though, saying that he would like to do one at some point but that it would probably be with a different set of characters.
"Maybe not Royston Vasey - that would be the thing," he said. "I think it would be a new thing by me, Mark [Gatiss], Steve [Pemberton] and Jeremy [Dyson] - still The League of Gentlemen, but it wouldn't be those characters. It would be a new project, under the banner of us."
He voiced concerns about the potential new show however, fearing that it could wind up as a 'fifth-rate version of The League of Gentlemen".
"That's the danger now, isn't it?" mused Shearsmith. "People like it now - they have a fond memory of it. You don't want to spoil it by wandering on, decrepit, trying to do Pam Doove!"
Shearsmith and Pemberton's next series, Inside No 9, begins on BBC Two on Wednesday December 5th.Reuse content