EXCLUSIVE: Fresh from mocking Roy Moore and Jason Spencer on his Showtime series Who Is America?, Sacha Baron Cohen is setting his sights on the UK by producing a series for Viacom’s Channel 5.
I hear Baron Cohen’s indie Spelthorne Community Television, which he set up with former Channel 4 commissioner and Objective Media chief Andrew Newman, is making Outrageously Funny for the British broadcaster.
The six-part show, which was ordered by factual commissioner Greg Barnett, will celebrate Britain’s most genre-defining and boundary pushing comedians. However, it does not feature Baron Cohen himself, who is known for playing characters including Ali G, Borat and Brüno. Outrageously Funny is exec produced by Newman and Matt Edmonds and is the company’s debut commission for C5.
It comes hot on the heels of Who Is America?, the political satire series that Spelthorne produces, which has aired three episodes of so far.
The indie, which is part owned by Channel 4, is building up a library of comedies. It recently produced Filth and the Fury, the story of the Sex Pistols for Sky Arts’ Urban Myths strand, as well as three-part comedy short The Educatoror, set at a tough, inner city London girls school, written by Paul G Raymond and Luke Manning and starring Vicki Pepperdine and Jessica Knappet.
Elsewhere, it made short Oi Leonardo! for BBC Three, where classic paintings are brought to life, featuring British comedy talent including Stephen Fry, Samantha Spiro, Nick Mohammed, Katy Wix, and has also made a number of pilots including Dateables for C4.
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