Sky ups original British comedy offering with a host of new and returning shows.

In The Long Run, will be returning to Sky One.

“It’s such a thrill to be able to bring our customers – who keep telling us they love comedy – such sparkling shows with world class talent. Over the last 18 months our comedies have won record ratings, a host of awards and the acclaim of customers and critics alike. We’ve set a high bar, and are extremely proud to be raising it with these new and returning shows.” – Head of Sky Comedy, Jon Mountague

Sky’s substantial investment in original British comedy continues with an impressive array of new and returning shows coming to Sky One and streaming service NOW TV in their winter 2018 into spring 2019 schedules. The Sky original productions include new comedies Hitmen, starring Sue Perkins and Mel Giedroyc and The Queen and I, starring David Walliams and Samantha Bond, plus a second series of Idris Elba created In the Long Run. A range of seven new comedy shorts will also join the line-up.

This Christmas, the House of Windsor will be released from royal duty in The Queen and I, a comedy based on the novel by the late Sue Townsend. In the 90-minute special, the People’s Republican Party is elected to power and the monarchy is dismantled by the unfathomably popular Prime Minister Jack Barker, played by David Walliams. The show follows our beloved Royal Family, with Samantha Bond playing the dethroned Queen, as they are evicted from Buckingham Palace and forced to lead normal lives as citizens of a republic. The Queen and I began filming last week, with Walliams and Bond being joined by a star cast including Amanda Abbington, Francis Barber and Johnny Vegas.

Meanwhile, Idris Elba and Bill Bailey are set to return to telly screens as Sky One greenlight a second series of their award-winning, top-rated comedy In The Long Run. Filming for the second series is scheduled for 2019, and will continue to follow the adventures of Walter, Agnes, Valentine and their neighbours Bagpipes and Kirsty. The series, created and produced by Idris Elba, is loosely based on Elba’s own childhood and explores life growing up on an estate in 1980s London.

The laughs don’t stop there as Sky also plans to release a range of seven comedy shorts this month, with a cast of one-of-a-kind talent including Alex Brooker, Lee Ridley (aka Lost Voice Guy), Jonny Pelham, Kris Marshall, Samson Kayo, Susan Wokoma, and Sindhu Vee. All seven shorts will be available on demand on Sky from tomorrow (25th September), followed by transmission on Sky Arts next month.

There will also be a first for Mel and Sue as they appear in their first scripted comedy. The former Great British Bake off and Light Lunch hosts and comedians star in Hitman. Having stumbled into a career in contract killing, misfits Fran and Jamie (Sue Perkins and Mel Giedroyc) are not your typical killers for hire. Working out of their scruffy van, each episode follows the hapless duo as they try to carry out their latest hit, inevitably derailed by incompetence, bickering, and inane antics.

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