C4 seeks ideas

Comedy Lab slots up for grabs

Channel 4 is looking for ideas for the next series of Comedy Lab, to be screened in the autumn.

This will be the fifth series of the slot, which gives new performers, writers, directors and producers the chance to gain valuable television experience.

And it has spawned series, such as Dom Joly's Trigger Happy TV (pictured), Peter Kay's Phoenix Nights and Los Dos Bros.

Channel 4's entertainment editor Iain Morris said: "The creative brief is necessarily broad. This is a genuine opportunity to be adventurous, challenging and different.

"Stand-up comedy per se is not something we're actively looking for whereas an innovative vehicle for an exciting new comic is.

"We're looking for original approaches to traditional genres such as formatted shows, narrative and broken comedy, as well as truly experimental pieces from writers and performers whose work doesn't easily fit any of the established entertainment strands."

The show is half an hour long - or 23min 45s after adverts - but programmes half this length would also be commissioned to accommodate ideas which wouldn't sustain the full half hour.

Channel 4 says money will be allocated "on the basis of sensible, realistic budgets" with programmes financed according to their needs. But there's not likely to be the cahs for extensive foreign travel, elaborate sets and a cast of thousands.

Morris added: "Ideally projects will be submitted via a production company. If, as a writer or performer, you don't feel you have the necessary contacts to take this route, please feel free to submit direct to us, and if we are keen on the idea, we will work together with you to find the right production company for your project."

Please submit your ideas to Comedy Lab, c/o Iain Morris & Robert Popper, Entertainment Department, Channel Four, 124 Horseferry Road, London, SW1P 2TX by March 15.

Published: 24 Jan 2002

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