“It’s about time the Americans gave her back.” That’s Shane Allen, controller of comedy commissioning at the BBC, on the return of Tracey Ullman to British television. After many years working in the U.S., the BAFTA- and Emmy-winner is prepping a new comedy series for BBC One. While a different entity, the six-part The Tracey Ullman Show shares its name with Ullman’s 1987-1990 Fox series which famously gave life to The Simpsons (the family was introduced in animated shorts shown during the program). The new BBC One series features Ullman playing diverse and distinct characters living in, or visiting, the UK.
A half-hour series, it’s a BBC In-house Comedy and Allan McKeown Presents production. Producer is Caroline Norris, and executive producers are Ullman and Ben Farrell. There is no word yet on an airdate.
Ullman last appeared on the BBC in A Kick Up The Eighties and Three Of A Kind in the early and mid-80s before emigrating to the States. Of her return to Britain, she said, “The BBC has changed a bit since the last time I worked here, when it was all men in bow ties who had completed National Service. Now there are a lot more women. Great ones. The important things haven’t changed, though. The BBC still provides an environment that allows you the freedom to create the best shows possible.”
Allen called her “the missing gem in the British comedy crown for too long.” Ullman’s most recent sketch comedy series was Showtime’s State Of The Union from 2008-2010. She did a guest arc on the final season of How I Met Your Mother last year and is also in Disney’s movie musical Into The Woods. She’s repped by WME and Hamilton Hodell.
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