C4's Comedy Showcase to return

More pilots for 2009

Channel 4 plans to broadcast a second series of Comedy Showcase pilots next autumn.

Last year’s series of six half-hour shows produced three full series, including the recent Kevin Bishop Show (pictured).

Now the broadcaster wants production companies to submit pitches for another six slots, despite general plans to slash programming budgets, in the hope of finding new hits.

Two more series from the 2007 Comedy Showcases are due to air soon: Plus One, about a man trying to outdo his ex after she marries Duncan from the pop group Blue, and Free Agents, an awkward relationship comedy starring Stephen Mangan and Sharon Horgan.

Channel 4 head of programmes Julian Bellamy added that the broadcaster would continue to take risks, despite falling budgets and the media furore over the Jonathan Ross and Russell Brand phone calls.

He said: ‘Audiences know what to expect of C4 and they give us different permissions because of it. They want us to push boundaries, challenge orthodoxies, take risks and support new talent. They do not want out programmes to be to everyone’s taste all the time – even if that means, on occasion, we risk offending some sensibilities.’

Published: 28 Nov 2008

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