UKTV have revealed the first three titles from its original scripted commissions on Gold.
The shows range from ambitious, large scale, single camera to CGI spooks and studio sitcom: sometimes edgy, sometimes quirky, all are contemporary and highly individual with the potential to continue as returning series the broadcasters states.
“The first three of our new commissions for Gold offer a fantastic range of different stories and comic styles. Between them they will start to establish a new tone of voice for our originations. We’ve deliberately targeted scripts that play to Gold viewers’ known love of classic British sitcom but they’re also modern, sharply-written pieces which deliver on our promise of high quality, world class comedy.” – Richard Watsham, UKTV’s Director of Commissioning
The first announced is a three part series, Henry IX. A single camera series of half-hour episodes on a grand scale set in the fictitious, contemporary court of Henry IX, King of the United Kingdom. This is the almost universal story of a middle-aged man trapped in his life… except this one just happens to be the reigning monarch. Penned by the legendary comedy writing team Dick Clement and Ian La Frenais. The guys behind Porridge (BBC), The Likely Lads (BBC) and Auf Wiedersehen Pet (Central TV for ITV) to name a few success stories.
Next up is Marley’s Ghosts. Three half hour episodes of a high concept single camera sitcom; a distinctive and original ensemble piece about a woman who has a rare gift that comes with mixed blessings. She can talk to the dead, which sadly now includes both her husband and her lover. Awkward. Written by Daniel Peacock.
Finally Bull is a studio comedy with a unique and quirky sense of humour, featuring the eponymous Bull, a man who attempts to run his antiques shop aided and hampered in equal measure by his team of dysfunctional staff. Written by first-time sitcom writers Gareth Gwynn and John-Luke Roberts, the show will run for three half hour episodes. Each commission goes into production during spring and summer for transmission later in 2015 and early 2016.
Another raft of new content for Gold is already scheduled for this summer: Bob Monkhouse: Million Joke Man celebrates the life and extraordinary career of one of Britain’s best-known comedy performers, as told by his close friend Paul O’Grady; and The Interviews is a revealing, touching and hugely entertaining six-part exploration of some of this country’s most original performing talents, told through the prism of their chat-show interviews across the decades. Both series are due to air in June and July.
A second raft of original scripted commissions will be announced in early summer.