Dave to air first ever ‘Comedy Festival in an Ad Break’ for CALM


International Friendship Day 2019

30 July 2019

  • Latest activation in the long-running 'Be the mate you'd want' campaign launches just after 9pm on Tuesday 30th July on Dave to celebrate International Friendship Day

  • Seventeen comics line-up to tell jokes about friendships as a reminder to get in touch with the people close to you as small gestures can mean a lot.

UKTV's comedy channel, Dave, is taking over a commercial ad break and will use the time for the first ever 'Comedy Festival in an Ad Break' as part of its partnership with the Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM), a leading movement against suicide, which remains the single biggest killer of men under the age of 45 in the UK.

To celebrate International Friendship Day on Tuesday 30th July at 9.12pm during Taskmaster, instead of adverts and TV trailers, the channel will instead air funny anecdotes about friendship from top comics including Lou Sanders, Natasia Demetriou, Alex Horne and Phil Wang. Judge Romesh star Jess Knappett will also be lending her voice to the ad, providing the intro and outro voiceover.

The four-minute ad takeover is audio with animation and is made by UKTV's in house creative team. The full line-up of 17 comedians is: Ahir Shah, Alex Horne, Dane Baptiste, Darren Harriott, David Mumeni, Ed Gamble, Elf Lyons, Jamali Maddix, Jessie Cave, Lou Sanders, Maisie Adam, Natasia Demetriou, Phil Wang, Pierre Novelli, Sindhu Vee, Stevie Martin and Zoe Lyons.

Comedy Festival In An Ad Break | Be The Mate You'd Want

The long-term 'Be the mate you'd want' campaign kicked off in 2018 with promos on Dave's airtime, print and out of home ads, radio ads across the Global Radio network, social media, branded beer mats and coffee cups.

Early in 2019 the Dave/CALM Conversations Against Living Miserably podcast launched and it swiftly moved into the top 20 iTunes comedy chart. The partnership is to encourage and support male friendship as part of a shared ambition between CALM and UKTV to tackle male depression and suicide. It centres around the idea that small gestures from a friend can be a lifeline for someone going through a tough time. The ad takeover and subsequent promos will encourage people to do something to show a mate that they're there for them.

Luke Hales, Dave's Channel Director commented:

We want to use Dave's reach to encourage people to get in touch with friends who need a reminder that someone is thinking of them and someone cares. The Comedy Festival in an Ad Break is a unique Dave way of doing this. Funny and warm, and ultimately by encouraging men to reach out to their friends, we are supporting CALM's mission to create a more positive and open culture when it comes to mental health.

Simon Gunning, CEO of the Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM) said:

We're delighted to bring the next exciting phase of the 'Be the mate you'd want' campaign with Dave and UKTV to life. Comedy can be a fantastic platform for what may have traditionally been deemed difficult conversations around mental health and being there for your friends when things get tough. This partnership allows us to reach a broad audience with a funny and entertaining execution, all underpinned with an important message throughout.


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Creative Agency: UKTV Creative
Creative Director: Scott Russell
Creative Manager, Dave: Paul Philpott
Original Idea/ Script/ Senior Social Manager: Aaron Gillies
Diector: Tom Corbett
Senior Producer: Celia Bayne
Campaign Producer: Holly McIvor
Design Director: Peter Allinson
Design Producer: Sophie Yeoman
Key Art Design: Dani Liquieri
Head of Marketing, Dave: Cherie Cunningham
Talent Booker: Gem Pinkney
Assistant Brand Manager, Dave: Zena Jarjis
Animation: Mmmultiply
Motion Design: Jade Dauncey
Illustrator: Alex Fine

For more information, please contact:
Justine Bower (Director of Communications, UKTV)
Ali Laurie (Network Communications Executive, UKTV)

About Dave
Freeview 19, Sky 111, Virgin 127, YouView 19, Freesat 157, BT & TalkTalk 19
On demand on UKTVPlay

Ever since it was knee high to a TV remote, Dave had an idea. It wanted to be the first place viewers would come for brand-new, award-winning entertainment from the biggest and brightest stars and production companies in the UK. And in the years since, it has launched some of the most exciting and best-loved titles on TV. There are names like BAFTA and Emmy-nominated Taskmaster - now in its ninth series -, Judge Romesh, Hypothetical, Jon Richardson: Ultimate Worrier and Comedians Giving Lectures. And of course there's Dave Gorman, whose inquisitive mind is returning to the channel for Terms and Conditions Apply. It's not just in front of the camera where the comic genius lies either, with a wealth of scripted treasure such as Sliced, Porters and the globally popular Red Dwarf.

Dave's not content just to make you laugh and share gags with your mates though. Expedition with Steve Backshall and Hurricane Man are showing you regions and aspects of the earth never before seen on TV. Red Bull Soapbox continues to delight with its boundless capacity for invention. And stepping away from the TV entirely, Dave's partnered with CALM to launch the "Be The Mate You'd Want" campaign and the "Conversations Against Living Miserably" podcast.

Reaching 20million viewers a month, Dave's come a long way, but it's only just getting warmed up.

dave.uktv.co.uk / @davechannel

About UKTV

UKTV has been at the forefront of branded television for over 25 years, entertaining the nation with programmes they love. Its leading brands - Dave, Gold, W, Drama, Alibi, Eden and Yesterday - span comedy, entertainment, natural history, factual and drama, and are delivered to audiences through UKTV Play, Freeview, Sky, Virgin Media, BT, TalkTalk, YouView, Freesat and Amazon Fire. The broadcaster is a significant investor in British creativity and is committed to working with new and established writers, directors and programme-makers.

UKTV is part of BBC Studios, the UK's most-awarded production company, a world-class distributor with international branded services, and a commercial subsidiary of the world's leading public service broadcaster, the BBC.

corporate.uktv.co.uk | press.uktv.co.uk | @uktvpress

About CALM

The Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM) is leading a movement against suicide, the single biggest killer of men under the age of 45 in the UK. In 2016, 76% of all suicides in the UK were male (ONS). Only 55% of men who've experienced depression will tell anyone about it, compared to 67% of women (CALM's Masculinity Audit 2016).

CALM's free, confidential and anonymous helpline & webchat are open every day, 5pm-midnight.: thecalmzone.net/get-help

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