BBC launches sitcom contest

Hunt for multicultural scripts

The BBC is to launch a new sitcom script competition, aimed at encouraging ideas from writers who are not white and middle-class

But the idea has angered Tory MP Philip Davies , who said: ‘Licence fee payers will be appalled to be subsidising a politically correct competition like this.’

All Mixed Up will ask entrants to submit the first ten pages of a sitcom, with the best six scripts being developed for a showcase, featuring professional actors, at the Soho Theatre in December

A panel will then choose the best of these, with the winner receiving £1,000 and the runner-up getting £500. In return, the BBC will have exclusive rights to develop these two scripts, with the possibility of making them into series.

The project is being run by the BBC’s College of Comedy, whose creative head Micheál Jacob said: ‘We hope the competition will attract entries from writers who may feel their lives are not currently reflected in television comedy, and will introduce us to funny and fresh new voices

‘I think there is a feeling perhaps that the BBC is a closed door for writers who are not necessarily white middle class. I wanted to say the door is open and that we want to find shows that reflect the fact Britain is a multicultural society.’

The competition will be launched on the BBC writers’ room website on August 31

Published: 20 Aug 2010

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