Thursday 18 September 2014
Brand New Scripted Comedy from Baby Cow Productions & Bonafide Films
UKTV boosts original sitcom credentials with Undercover, a brand new 6x40? comedy series for the UK?s most watched non-PSB channel Dave.
Undercover is a high stakes action comedy about an undercover police officer who finds himself hopelessly out of his depth when he infiltrates an Armenian crime family. The star-studded cast, shot on location in Newcastle, includes BAFTA award-winning Daniel Rigby (Eric and Ernie, Big School, Black Mirror) and Sarah Alexander (Smack The Pony, Coupling). The series also features Keith Allen (Robin Hood, The Comic Strip Presents...), Ryan Sampson (Plebs, Up The Women, After You?ve Gone), Yasmine Akram (Stella, Sherlock), Brett Goldstein (Uncle) and Michael Socha (This is England, Being Human)
The sitcom, which will air on Dave in 2015, is co-created and co written by Andy Milligan (I?m A Celebrity, The Rob Brydon Show) and Sacha Alexander (The Gigolos) who also plays crime boss Ara, written with Mark Staheli and directed by Dave Lambert (Common Ground, Alan Partridge: Welcome to the Places of My Life). It is a co-production between Bonafide Films and Baby Cow Productions. It will be executive produced by Henry Normal for Baby Cow and Margery Bone for Bonafide who also produces.
Undercover follows the story of Chris (Daniel Rigby), a neurotic, over analytical metrosexual who?s been searching for a family his whole life and has finally found one. Unfortunately the family he?s found are a bunch of psychotic Armenian gangsters and Chris is an undercover policeman who?s woefully out of his depth.
On the basis of his ethnicity (he?s an eighth Greek,), the former traffic cop has been chosen to infiltrate Armenian crime family, the Sarkissians. Things are made even more complicated by the fact that Chris is attracted to two women at the same time ? Zoe (Sarah Alexander), his ambitious and driven police handler and Lara (Yasmin Akram), the femme fatale of the crime family, which means he spends every waking moment either falling in love or fearing for his life.
The series has been ordered by UKTV Director of Commissioning Richard Watsham and Dave General Manager Steve North with UKTV?s Simon Lupton and Tanya Qureshi acting as commissioning execs on behalf of UKTV.
Henry Normal said,
It?s sort of Donnie Brasco as a comedy. Full of tension and jeopardy. I can?t wait to see it on Dave.
Margery Bone said,
We?re delighted to be working with Dave to give viewers a bold and fresh action comedy like Undercover.
Richard Watsham, UKTV Director of Commissioning, said,
Baby Cow and Bonafide Films have developed a brilliant set of scripts, dark and funny with an almost frenetic pace to the action. We?ve made a commitment to extending our original scripted content across the network and this is one of the first exciting steps making good on that promise. Expect much more from us soon.
Steve North, General Manager Dave, added,
We are excited to be extending our comedy remit on Dave by continuing to grow our breadth of original commissions and welcoming some of Britain?s best comedy actors and writing talent to the channel.
UKTV has had a number of original comedy successes on Dave, including Red Dwarf X which proved a ratings smash-hit for the channel, with 2.09 million viewers tuning in to the premiere episode. The success of new content paved the way for a raft of popular comedy commissions in 2013 including Dave Gorman Modern Life is Goodish, Ross Noble Freewheeling, Alan Davies: As Yet Untitled and Crackanory, which have all been renewed for second series? and have helped position Dave as the most watched non-PSB channel in Britain. The news also follows the commissioning announcement for a brand new and exclusive series with David Hasselhoff, coming to the channel in 2015.
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Notes to Editors
About Dave HD
Sky 111/232, Virgin 128, HD: 129, Freeview 12
Dave proudly presents a plethora of original commissions; Crackanory, Ross Noble Freewheeling, Dave Gorman?s Modern Life is Goodish, and Dara O Briain: School of Hard Sums, all laden with the biggest names in British comedy. Not to mention a brand spanking new series with QI favourite Alan Davies in Alan Davies As Yet Untitled.
If that wasn't enough to whet your appetite we also have a stack of national treasures like QI, Red Dwarf X, Mock the Week and Have I Got News For You, plus the Red Bull trilogy of Cliff Diving, X-Fighters and the Soap Box races. And of course, we still have Top Gear.
Obviously we have to add, Dave is the UK?s most watched non-PSB channel broadcasting to over 27 million people per month, featuring hit US shows including the sharp-witted and sharp-suited Suits, the ludicrously addictive Lizard Lick Towing and the wonder that is Storage Hunters, the gift that keeps on giving.
UKTV is the multi-award winning media company that reaches over 42 million viewers every month.
UKTV's eleven imaginative brands - UKTV Play, Dave, Watch, Gold, Alibi, Yesterday, Drama, Really, Home, Eden and Good Food - include the most popular non-PSB channel in the UK and account for 9% of the British commercial TV market. The company?s most recent financial results showed record-breaking year?end revenue of £278m, and EBITDA of £67.4m. It invested a record £125m in programming and related launches last year, and is becoming an increasingly significant investor in UK creativity.
UKTV has a truly innovative model, curating brand-defining commissions, high-profile acquisitions and the very best of BBC, alongside programmes originally shown on ITV and Channel 4. The network embraces technology to deliver inspired channels to audiences through Freeview, Sky, Virgin Media, BT, TalkTalk, YouView and UKTV Play, and distributes its highly valued original programmes to 200 territories.
Now celebrating its 21st year at the forefront of digital television, UKTV - an independent commercial joint venture between BBC Worldwide and Scripps Networks Interactive, Inc. (SNI) - is proud to be the only British broadcaster to be recognised by Best Companies.