Filming starts on Sophie Willan's sitcom pilot Alma’s Not Normal | As Jayde Adams joins the cast © Steve Ullathorne

Filming starts on Sophie Willan's sitcom pilot Alma’s Not Normal

As Jayde Adams joins the cast

Filming has started on the new BBC Two comedy pilot, Alma’s Not Normal, created by comedian Sophie Willan.

Set and shot in her home town of Bolton, the series stars Willan as wild-child, Alma Nuthall amid a family of eccentric, unruly women.

Fellow comic Jayde Adams has also joined the cast as Alma’s best friend, Leanne

Siobhan Finneran, from Happy Valley, plays Alma’s heroin-addicted mum Lin; Lorraine Ashbourne (Barbara Castle in The Crown) is her vampish nan Joan, and James Baxter, Leroy in Still Open All Hours is Anthony, Alma’s ex boyfriend.

The 30-minute pilot, based on Willan’s own unusual life,  is being made for the New On Two strand of pilots by Expectation.

Nerys Evans, the company’s creative director of comedy, said: ‘It’s testament to the quality of Sophie’s writing that we’ve managed to attract such a strong cast to play alongside her. In the wonderfully skilled hands of Producer Gill Isles, and director Andrew Chaplin, this feels like a very special show in the making.’

Willan, who won the BBC’s inaugural Caroline Aherne Bursary Award in 2018 a year after being nominated for the Edinburgh Comedy Award, is a series regular in Still Open All Hours and is the voice of The Circle 

Alma’s Not Normal production credits

Made by: Expectation for BBC Two
Written by: Sophie Willan
Executive producers: Nerys Evans, Sophie Willan
Commissioning editor for the BBC: Kate Daughton
Directed by: Andrew Chaplin
Produced by: Gill Isles 

Published: 13 Feb 2020

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