UKTV unveils new season of UKTV Originals at annual showcase
UKTV, Britain’s biggest multichannel broadcaster, today revealed its largest ever slate of UKTV Originals at its annual showcase event.
CEO, Darren Childs said:
I’m incredibly proud of the programmes we’re presenting today. It represents a five-fold increase in the number of UKTV Original Productions over the past five years, building the biggest commissioned slate in our 25-year history. Our investment into new content across the network has given us a stable of entertainment commissions, successful launches, and award-winning returning series that has underpinned our strong growth over the last five years. And that means we can continue to strengthen our position as the UK’s third commercial broadcaster.
We have broadened out into sports, gameshows, factual programming alongside original scripted comedies and lifestyle. Our viewers across traditional broadcast and TV streaming service, UKTV Play are watching UKTV Originals more than ever and we are investing at pace to bring them more of what they love.
With 50 Originals already in production, UKTV announced new shows including The Wave, hosted by Big Brother favourite and host of Most Haunted Live, Rylan Clarke, for premium entertainment channel W; dinnerladies diaries, a documentary series with never seen before access to the diaries of the late Victoria Wood for Britain’s favourite comedy channel, Gold; a new ten-part series The Customiser is Always Right (WT), with YouTube sensation and celebrity car customiser Yianni Charalambous for Dave and a return to live paranormal entertainment with the continuing franchise Celebrity Haunted Mansion, hosted by Christine Lampard and Matt Richardson for W.
These announcements sit alongside new programme launches, including Porters, a brand new scripted comedy written by Dan Sefton (Trust Me, Delicious, The Good Karma Hospital), based on his own experiences of working in a hospital and Murder on the Blackpool Express, a comedic spin on the Agatha Christie-style whodunit. UKTV welcomes back returning Originals, which include a new series of the BAFTA-nominated series Taskmaster, hit-fantasy comedy Zapped, Emmy Award-winning sci-fi sitcom in space, Red Dwarf XIII and Dave Gorman Modern Life is Goodish.
The network, which is Britain’s biggest multichannel broadcaster reaching over 40 million people each month with almost 10% of commercial audiences, has seen a five-fold increase in UKTV Originals hours over the past five years and more Original hours are scheduled for 2018 than at any point in UKTV’s 25-year history.
UKTV Live Logo
A glittering array of stars joined the broadcaster at Claridge’s for its annual showcase event, UKTV Live, including Christine Lampard, David Haye, Craig Charles, Alex Jones, James Buckley, Ross Noble, Susan Wokoma, Una Stubbs, Kimberly Nixon, Greg Davies, Alex Horne, Sally Philips, Dara O Briain, Jason Byrne, Matt Forde, Mark Watson, Sheila Reid, Katherine Ryan, Gemma Cairney, Chris Barrie, Dr Christian Jessen and Matt Richardson.
Boxing legend, David Haye, who has signed a landmark deal to bring boxing to Dave, opened the event in conversation with Darren Childs on stage.
Programming Highlights – Gold
Britain’s favourite comedy channel, Gold will honour the late Victoria Wood with dinnerladies diaries (3×60), a special UKTV Original documentary series based on Wood’s personal diaries. Twenty years ago, Victoria Wood put pen to paper and wrote her multi-award-winning comedy, dinnerladies. Produced by Phil McIntyre Television, dinnerladies diaries tells the story of how this groundbreaking comedy was conceived, developed, produced and why Victoria chose to end it after just two series. Gold will give viewers a glance into Victoria’s notebooks, her backstage photos and studio records – all of which have never been seen before.
The three-part series will also feature interviews with the cast and friends of dinnerladies as they reminisce about one of Britain’s most loved comedies on its 20th anniversary.
New shows launching this Autumn include Murder on the Blackpool Express, a 1 x 120 minute Original, produced by Tiger Aspect Productions for Gold, in association with Shiny Button Productions, that mixes comedy and classic murder mystery, set on a guided tour coach trip to Blackpool. Created by Jason Cook, the award-winning writer behind BBC Comedy Hebburn, the cast includes Johnny Vegas, Sian Gibson, Una Stubbs, Kimberley Nixon, Nigel Havers, Sheila Reid and Griff Rhys Jones.
The Rebel, featuring Simon Callow as hellraising pensioner Henry Palmer, also returns for a second series and is made by Retort.
Programming Highlights – W
UKTV is building out its Celebrity Haunted… format after the success of Celebrity Haunted Hotel on premium entertainment channel W with newly commissioned Celebrity Haunted Mansion (5×120) from North One. Christine Lampard and Matt Richardson return for TV’s most entertaining scare fest – only this time there will be no room service, complimentary dressing gowns or mini bars as the celebrities head into a deserted mansion. The refreshed gameshow format will pit two celebrity teams against each other as they battle it out to become champion of the Celebrity Haunted Mansion, assisted by their paranormal expert team captains.
Brand new to W is The Wave (10×60) hosted by Rylan and mixing sun, sea, surf…and stacks of cash. But instead of packing sunscreen, competitors must pack their swimmers as Rylan sends them off in pairs to battle the elements of the Atlantic coast in an effort to win the booty. Produced by award-winning Primal Media.
Returning to W for new runs this autumn are Dr Christian Will See You Now (Firecracker), John Bishop: In Conversation With… (Lola Entertainment), two new series and a Christmas special of the fixed-rig documentary series Inside the Ambulance (Brown Bob Productions). New shows launching this autumn also include The Secret Life of the Ballroom (Electric Ray) and The Secrets in my Family, hosted by Alex Jones, produced by Boundless and funded by Ancestry.
Programming Highlights – Dave
Dave has turned to YouTube sensation Yianni Charalambous for a ten-part series, The Customiser Is Always Right (WT) from Barcroft Productions. It is the latest early peak time commission from Dave, which has had recent successes with UKTV Originals The Joy of Techs, Used Car Wars and Eat Your Heart Out with Nick Helm.
The channel continues to increase its UKTV Originals across the schedule with new series of the BAFTA-nominated series Taskmaster, plus Zapped, Emmy-winning sci-fi sitcom in space, Red Dwarf, Dara O Briain’s Go 8 Bit and Dave Gorman Modern Life is Goodish, plus brand new shows Porters and Jason Byrne gameshow Don’t Say It, Bring It coming later this year. Dave is also furthering its live sport committing to bring five live boxing matches to free television in the next year, in partnership with David Haye and Richard Schaefer’s Hayemaker Ringstar. The first will be shown 20 October, live on Dave.
UKTV’s unique access to the best of British television continues with shows including comedy hit, Mrs Brown’s Boys on Gold and the stunning drama, War and Peace on Drama.
UKTV also continues to invest in co-productions in partnership with a variety of production companies. Forthcoming highlights include The Great War in Numbers for Yesterday and Murdoch Mysteries, and new co-produced series Frankie Drake Mysteries for Alibi. (UK TV)