BBC AMERICA LAUNCHES COMEDY BLOCK
General Manager Perry Simon announces Ministry of Laughs showcasing a new generation of British comedy
New York - BBC AMERICA is launching a new, two hour, comedy zone, Ministry of Laughs, beginning Saturday, June 18, 10:00pm - 12:00pm ET/PT.
Ministry of Laughs premieres a raft of award-winning shows, kicking off with some of the most recent irreverent and inventive comedies from the UK. They include: The Inbetweeners, an all-new season of the BAFTA winning comedy; Come Fly With Me, the new project from Matt Lucas and David Walliams, creators and writers of their genre-breaking comedy Little Britain and Friday Night Dinner created and written by Robert Popper (Look Around You, South Park, Peep Show).
Other U.S. premiere titles returning for all-new seasons include award-winning series That Mitchell & Webb Show, The Thick of It and Peep Show. Kicking off the first hour of the slot are U.S. premiere episodes of The Graham Norton Show.
Perry Simon, General Manager, Channels, BBC Worldwide America says: "There's nothing quite like British comedy and since joining last year one of my key ambitions has been to showcase the very best of it here on BBC AMERICA. In the early days of the channel, The Office broke the mold and virtually reinvented television comedy on both sides of the Atlantic. Ministry of Laughs will deliver a new generation of talented actors, writers and creators who are taking British comedy to a whole new place, and the brilliant Graham Norton Show is the perfect launch pad for this effort."
· The Inbetweeners (6 x 30) is back for a third season with more tales of awkwardness, idiocy and sexual misadventure from Will (Simon Bird), Simon (Joe Thomas), Jay (James Buckley) and Neil (Blake Harrison). Now in their final year at high school the boys are looking forward to a new era of respect and credibility - and romance. Iain Morris and Damon Beesley are the creators, writers and executive producers. It is a Bwark production for E4 and distributed by DRG. The Inbetweeners premieres Saturday, June 18, 11:00pm ET/PT.
· Come Fly With Me (6 x 30) is a gloriously magnificent mock-documentary set in an airport terminal. Matt Lucas and David Walliams play over 60 characters from flight crew and check-in to paparazzi and passengers. It is a BBC AMERICA/Little Britain Productions/BBC co-production. The executive producers are Jed Leventhal, Little Britain Productions and Mark Freeland and Geoff Posner for the BBC. It's distributed by BBC Worldwide. Come Fly with Me premieres Saturday, June 18, 11:30 pm ET/PT.
· Friday Night Dinner (6 x 30) written by Robert Popper, is a comedy focused on the experience of a traditional but not strictly observant Jewish family, the Goodmans. Every Friday night, brothers Adam (Simon Bird, The Inbetweeners) and Jonny (Tom Rosenthal) return to their parents' home for dinner. They consider the weekly event a necessary annoyance - necessary because they get fed, and annoying because, well, they have to spend the evening with Mom (Tamsin Greig, Episodes, Green Wing, Black Books) and Dad (Paul Ritter, The Norman Conquests). Girlfriends are an issue - Jonny's is made-up and not even the Internet can sort out a female for Adam. It doesn't help that he writes jingles for toilet roll commercials. It is a Big Talk Productions and Popper Pictures production for Channel 4. Executive producers are Kenton Allen, Nira Park and Caroline Leddy. Friday Night Dinner premieres Saturday, August 6, 11:30pm ET/PT.
· Katy Brand's Big Ass Show (12 x 30) is a parallel world of original characters and crazy celebrities with big egos and even bigger flaws. With the sword of truth and the shield of chaos at her side, Katy Brand takes on the entire entertainment industry, swills it around in her brain and then spits it out. It is a World's End Production for ITV2. The Executive Producer is Gregor Cameron and it's distributed by BBCWW. It premieres Saturday, January 7, 2012 11:30pm ET/PT.
Returning favourites include:
· BAFTA winning sketch show That Mitchell & Webb Show (6 x 30) starring David Mitchell and Robert Webb premiering Saturday, October 1, 11:30pm ET/PT.
· BAFTA winning The Thick of It (8 x 30) starring Peter Capaldi (In the Loop, Torchwood: Children of Earth) as the Prime Minister's Machiavellian spin-doctor Malcolm Tucker premieres Saturday, November 12, 11:30pm ET/PT.
· Award winning comedy Peep Show (12 x 30) follows the private worlds of Mark (David Mitchell) and Jeremy (Robert Webb), two twenty-something room-mates living in London as the dysfunctional duo try in vain to grow up. It premieres Saturday, March 31, 2012, 11:30pm ET/PT.
BBC AMERICA delivers U.S. audiences high-quality, innovative and intelligent programming. Established in 1998, it has been the launch pad for talent embraced by American mainstream pop culture, including Ricky Gervais, Gordon Ramsay, Graham Norton, and successful programming formats including ground-breaking non-scripted television like Top Gear and top-rated science-fiction like Doctor Who. Owned by BBC Worldwide, the commercial arm of the BBC, BBC AMERICA has attracted both critical acclaim and major awards including an Emmy, four Golden Globes and ten Peabody Awards. The channel attracts one of cable's most affluent and educated audiences and is available on digital cable and satellite TV in more than 68 million homes. It broadcasts in both standard and high-definition, with content available On Demand across all major digital platforms. Online, www.bbcamerica.com is the place to go to dig deeper into pop culture with a British twist.