Monday 18 February 2019
The double BAFTA nominated and Broadcast Award winning UKTV Original series Taskmaster returns to Dave and welcomes a new group of candidates placing themselves at the mercy of Taskmaster tyrant Greg Davies, and the scrutiny of stats keeper and skivvy Little Alex Horne. Dave's eighth series of the most competitive and fierce comedy game show on television will air in May.
Risking life, limb, and dignity in the hope of making the Taskmaster proud are: BAFTA winning comedian Iain Stirling (Love Island, Host of Dog Ate My Homework), actor and writer Joe Thomas (Inbetweeners, Fresh Meat), acclaimed stand-up Lou Sanders (8 Out of 10 Cats, Sick of It), comedian and champion quizzer Paul Sinha (The Chase, Tonight At The Palladium), and BAFTA winning actor Sian Gibson (Peter Kay's Car Share, Murder On the Blackpool Express). Unaware of what awaits them in each wax sealed envelope, only one competitor can become the victorious owner of His Royal Task-ness' golden head and be crowned the next Taskmaster Champion.
Produced by Avalon, Taskmaster's viewing figures have increased series on series. The seventh series of the Dave show starring James Acaster, Jessica Knappett, Kerry Godliman, Phil Wang, and Rhod Gilbert was the most successful to date with an average of 1.5 million viewers per episode, increasing by 7% compared to the last series and remains the most watched show on UKTV Play with over 7.4 million views.
Taskmaster was crowned Best Entertainment Programme at the Broadcast Awards 2018 (beating Strictly Come Dancing, I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here!, Love Island, The Voice UK, and All Round To Mrs. Brown's). Nominations for the show include an International Emmy for Best Non-Scripted Entertainment, two BAFTA nominations for Best Comedy Entertainment Programme, RTS Award, Broadcasting Press Guild Award, and two further nominations at the Broadcast Awards 2019 for Best Entertainment Programme and Best Multichannel Programme.
An international hit, Taskmaster has been sold into 17 countries including original versions of the show being developed for Comedy Central in the U.S. (starring Reggie Watts as the Taskmaster), TV 2 in Denmark, VTM in Belgium, TVE in Spain, and two series on Sweden's SVT channel.
Away from the screen, the launch of the Taskmaster Book 200 Extraordinary Tasks for Ordinary People was met with huge popularity, sold over 57K copies following publication, and swiftly rose to join top 20 bestselling hardback books in the UK four days after its release during the competitive Autumn/Winter sales period.
The eighth series of Taskmaster will air on Dave in May, catch up on series 1-7 on UKTV Play #Taskmaster
WHAT THE PRESS HAS SAID ABOUT TASKMASTER
Funny, revealing, and glorious...Caitlin Moran once wrote that the comedy panel game is one of the glories of British TV. A new one shone bright last night
Andrew Billen, The Times
The kind of Dave thing that shouldn't quite work but is actually wildly stupid fun. Mainly thanks to Alex Horne, late of so much splendid radio, and Greg Davies...a winner
Euan Ferguson, The Observer
It's glorious mayhem and stupidly funny
David Butcher, Radio Times
We're up to series 7 and it's as winning as ever
Sharon Lougher, Metro
Brilliantly madcap comedy game show
Christopher Stevens, Daily Mail
One of the funniest game shows on TV
Natasha Holt, TV Times Magazine
The keynote themes are ludicrous absurdity and moderately cruel sadism. Somehow, however, it all works brilliantly, with the presence of Horne adding the barest modicum of civility to proceedings...prepare for tears of laughter
Mark Wareham, Mail on Sunday, Event Magazine
Taskmaster is an unashamed celebration of the bizarre and the mediocre
Sam Wollaston, G2 Guardian
Never before has anything so absurd, so stupid, so utterly pointless, made such good television
Sara Wallis, Daily Mirror
Mike Ward, Saturday Magazine, Daily Express
The funniest show on telly
The Sun, TV Magazine
Emma Messenger, TV Choice
This seems to be a series that really brings families together
Bruce Dessau, Beyond the Joke
Sunday Times, Culture
David Stephenson, Sunday Express, S Magazine
The show routinely delivers the funniest, most unexpected comedy of the TV week...The cleverest spin on the panel show format in years, it's must-watch TV
Wesley Mead, Den of Geek
For more information and press tickets, please contact: Gem Pinkney firstname.lastname@example.org
Sky 155, Freeview 17, BT & TalkTalk 17, Freesat 160
On demand on Sky and UKTV Play
Since bursting onto TV sets in 2007, Dave has been putting in hours at the gym and is now a beefed-up powerhouse of brand new and original commissions from some of the biggest stars and production companies in entertainment. Romesh Ranganthan, Jon Richardson and YouTube sensation Yianni Charalambous are just some of the latest additions to the channel's ever-increasing slate.
Whether it's innovative comedy entertainment like the BAFTA and Emmy-nominated Taskmaster, Unspun with Matt Forde, and Dara o Briain's Go 8 Bit or scripted sitcoms including the worldwide hit Red Dwarf, Zapped, and Porters, Dave's guaranteed to work your funny bone like never before.
Dave's also committed to bringing live sport back to free-to-air and has an ongoing deal to show fights from David Haye's Hayemaker Ringstar venture. There's also Red Bull Soapbox, Cop Car Workshop, Sin City Motors and a whole host of much loved programming, all shot with Dave's unique personality that's led to the channel reaching 20million adults a month.
UKTV is a commercial broadcaster reaching nearly 40m viewers every month.
The award-winning independent has eleven imaginative brands - UKTV Play, Dave, W, Gold, Alibi, Yesterday, Drama, Really, Home, Eden and Good Food. These include the two most popular non-PSB channels in the UK and account for nearly 10% of the British commercial TV market.
The network delivers inspired channels to audiences through Freeview, Sky, BT, TalkTalk, YouView, Freesat, Amazon Fire and UKTV Play, and distributes its highly valued original programmes to 200 territories.
Now celebrating over 20 years at the forefront of digital television, UKTV - an independent commercial joint venture between BBC Studios and Discovery, Inc. - is proud to be the first British television broadcaster in The Sunday Times top 100 companies list.
Avalon is a multi-award winning talent management, live promotion and television production group with offices in the UK and the USA. Avalon and ARG, the talent management arm, has discovered and represents many artists that are household names, both in the UK, the USA, and around the world.
In 2018, Avalon was again named the number one true independent television production company in the UK and has produced numerous ground-breaking television shows including: Emmy and Peabody award winner Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO), multi-award winning and Emmy-nominated Catastrophe (Channel 4/Amazon Prime), RTS and Rose d'Or winning Not Going Out (the BBC's longest running sitcom currently on air), BAFTA and RTS-nominated Taskmaster (DAVE/UKTV), multi-BAFTA award winning TV Burp (ITV1), Russell Howard's Good News (BBC2), Fantasy Football League (BBC/ITV) and Workaholics (Comedy Central USA).
Avalon and Topical Television form the television arm of the company and other shows recently in production include: Catastrophe (C4/Amazon Prime), Taskmaster (Dave), The Russell Howard Hour (Sky One), Not Going Out (BBC One), Stand Up Central with Rob Delaney (Comedy Central UK) and Russell Howard & Mum: Road Trip (Comedy Central UK); whilst the catalogue is sold worldwide by Avalon Distribution.
Avalon produced Newman and Baddiel: Live at Wembley, the UK's first arena comedy show; Jerry Springer: The Opera, the first West End show to win all four UK 'Best New Musical' awards; and has continued to produce live shows globally, as well as promoting more winners and nominees of the prestigious Edinburgh Comedy Award than any other company. For Avalon news visit: www.avalon-entertainment.com or @avalonent.
For Avalon news visit: www.avalon-entertainment.com or @avalonent.