Sky1 has unveiled their slate of original content for the year ahead.
At an event held earlier today in London, the satcaster revealed an ambitious line up of new and returning content which includes ABC’s reboot of The Muppets, which will premiere later this year; as well as previously announced projects Lucky Man, from Stan Lee (starring, amongst others, James Nesbitt); comedy After Hours, starring Ardal O’Hanlan, John Thomson and Jaime Winstone; and the Rob Lowe fronted NBC co-production You, Me & The Apocalypse.
“I’m so excited we can offer absolutely top-quality drama all year round and I love how brilliantly unique our comedies feel,” said Sky1 Director Adam MacDonald. “The range of original programming we have completely reflects what Sky 1 stands for – the very best of modern Britain and Ireland, and all the eclecticism, diversity and joy that implies. We know that some of the best family moments come from sitting around the TV and enjoying that time together, and we hope with this new line-up to create many more of those moments.”
A key aspect of Sky1’s offerings going forward will be year-round original comedy and drama, which is being made possible by a 20% increase in the channel’s budget. To that end, two Sky Living shows, Mount Pleasant and Harlan Coben series The Five are moving to Sky1; while the channel has also commissioned a full series of Agatha Raisin and a new comedy series starring Sue Johnston titled Rovers.
Full Details Of The New Commissions Follow Below:
Following last year’s Christmas movie Agatha Raisin & The Quiche Of Death, Sky1 has commissioned a full hour-long series. The show’s first season will consist of eight episodes and is presently in production for a premiere later this year.
Based on the novels by MC Beaton, Agatha Raisin follows the former PR turned quirky detective as she investigates crimes in the quiet village of Carsely. Stewart Harcourt penned the scripts for the full series, which is once again being produced by Mammoth Screen. Cast members Ashley Jensen, Mathew Horne, Katy Wix, Matt McCooey, Jason Barnett and Jamie Glover are returning to reprise their roles.
“The Quiche of Death quickly established itself as a favourite amongst Sky 1 customers so I’m delighted to be welcoming Agatha Raisin and her escapades back to the channel”, said Adam MacDonald, Director of Sky1. “Fortunately, thanks to the incredibly talented MC Beaton we had another 24 brilliant stories to choose from.”
Penned by Joe Wilkinson and David Earl, Rovers is described as a “down-to-earth comedy” about the fans of a local lower league football team, the Redbridge Rovers, which will give audiences the opportunity to pull up a stool in the team’s clubhouse; the home for this one big family of supporters and their useless club.
The show centers on Doreen (Sue Johnston) who over the past quarter of a century has run the place. Her meat raffles are legendary and have kept punters coming through her doors all those years. Other character include obsessive fan Pete Mott, his gay best mate Tel, Pete’s young lodger Tom, barmaid Sam, bossy pensioner Francis and a whole host of other loveable eccentrics.
In addition to penning the scripts Joe Wilkinson and David Earl will also star as Bruce and Lee. Rovers, which has received an order for six episodes, was commissioned by Sky’s Head of Comedy Lucy Lumsden and is being produced by Jellylegs Productions. The series producer is Gill Isles, while Craig Cash is attached to direct. The executive producers are Lucy Ansbro and Craig Cash.