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Huge slump in British sitcoms

Channel 4 has launched a hunt to find new British sitcoms after discovering the number of such shows has slumped by factor of seven  in the past 20 years.

As part of its forthcoming programme called Who Killed The British Sitcom?, the channel found that in 1984 60 sitcoms were  commissioned. Last year, there were eight.

Speaking at the launch of the autumn season today, Channel 4’s director of television, Kevin Lygo, said the broadcaster needed new homegrown shows to plug the gap left by Friends and Sex And The City.

He said: ‘We're endlessly in search of [the next] Father Ted.’

And he attributed the collapse in new sitcoms being developed because ‘viewers are no longer prepared to sit through pap on the main channels. Sitcoms on the main channels were mostly terrible.’

New sitcoms being developed by Channel 4 include another from Peter Kay and  the I.T. crowd, about a bunch of computer geeks, written by the creator of Father Ted, Graham Linehan. Also returning is Peep Show.


Published: 18 Aug 2005

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