UKTV channel Gold is to celebrate the 40th anniversary of Ronnie Barker’s classic sitcom Porridge with a new documentary series.
To mark four decades since the gates of Slade Prison were first locked comedy channel Gold has commissioned Phil McIntyre Television to create three special hour-long documentaries about the much-loved series.
Porridge: The Inside Story will tell the real story behind the iconic programme, from the pilot episode, through to the Christmas specials and the spin-off follow up. It has been commissioned by UKTV Commissioning Editor, Iain Coyle, and ordered by Gold’s General Manager Steve North. The Executive Producer for Phil McIntyre is Lucy Ansbro and the Series Producer is Lindsay Jex.
Porridge is the sitcom that left an indelible mark on British comedy, and brought together the comic genius of Ronnie Barker, Richard Beckinsale and Sir David Jason. We’re delighted to bring this series to Gold, and to have exclusive access to both Dick Clement and Ian La Frenais. – UKTV’s Iain Coyle
In a television exclusive, viewers will be taken on a tour of the pivotal places Dick Clement and Ian La Frenais visited during the creation and development of the series, including the pub where they first met, the prisons they researched, and the little known filming locations they used.
Specially commissioned graphics and 3D animation will help bring alive the corridors and cells of Slade prison, providing a unique glimpse of life on the inside.
Each episode will contain classic sketches alongside rare and unseen material from the archives of the writers and the BBC, as well as forgotten treasures and anecdotes from the remaining cast, crew, advisors, friends, family and genuine Porridge fans.
As part of the series, a handful of contemporary comedians will join together to create a celebrity fan club, where they will assess and analyse the impact that Porridge has had on British comedy. And in a series finale, Gold viewers will also be able to vote for their favourite moment, which will be exclusively revealed to both Dick Clement and Ian La Frenais.