Thursday 18 September 2014
It was announced today that UKTV has commissioned a new 6 x 60 min series, devised by comedian and 2014 Foster’s Edinburgh Comedy Award nominee ALEX HORNE, starring GREG DAVIES and ALEX HORNE, for its popular entertainment channel Dave.
Taskmaster will see GREG DAVIES take the title role of The Taskmaster; setting tasks to a group of well-known comedians and ultimately deciding who wins. ALEX HORNE will assist The Taskmaster as his right-hand-man, coaxing the comedians to show how comic, creative and seriously competitive they are. Rivalry will be encouraged, dodgy tactics rewarded and bribes will be accepted in what is set to be the most the most dogged, hard-fought and ridiculous comedy show on TV. Taskmaster started out as a critically acclaimed live show, also devised by ALEX HORNE, which ran at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in 2010 and 2011.
RICHARD WATSHAM, Director of Commissioning, UKTV, said
Entertainment shows with this level of invention and ambition are extremely rare so it’s great to have it on Dave. It absolutely demonstrates our commitment to taking risks where other broadcasters might not. The thought of Alex Horne’s off beat comic genius brought to life with Greg Davies as the ultimate, authoritarian Taskmaster has me smiling already.
STEVE NORTH, General Manager, Dave said
Having seen Taskmaster live in Edinburgh back in 2011, it is fantastic to now bring the show to Dave viewers. It is a hilarious, full of energy and anarchic humour and is a great addition to the channel’s line up of original shows, which I hope will continue to widen the viewers that Dave appeals to. I can’t wait to see it on the channel.
JON THODAY, Joint Managing Director of Avalon Television, said
We are very excited to be producing this show for Dave. Alex’s inventive and highly original format has already proved to be a huge cult hit live, and I’m delighted that Greg has come on board to be the Taskmaster.
An Avalon Television production, Taskmaster was commissioned by RICHARD WATSHAM, Director of Commissioning at UKTV and ordered by Dave General Manager, STEVE NORTH. The series will be directed by ANDY DEVONSHIRE (The Apprentice and The Great British Bake Off) and produced by ALEX HORNE, while the Executive Producers are RICHARD ALLEN-TURNER, JAMES TAYLOR and JON THODAY. Avalon Television is currently in production with: new USA hit, Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO); the second series of GREG DAVIES critically acclaimed new sitcom, Man Down (Channel 4); the multi-award-winning and BBC’s longest running sitcom, Not Going Out (BBC One), written by and starring LEE MACK; Comedy Central’s (USA) breakout hit Workaholics; and Catastrophe, a new comedy series written by and starring ROB DELANEY and SHARON HORGAN (Channel 4).
Dave currently attracts over 27 million viewers a month and Taskmaster is due to air on the channel in spring 2015. New series of Avalon Television Productions’ Dave Gorman Modern’s Life Is Goodish and Ross Noble Freewheeling will also air on Dave later this year.
For more information contact:
Notes to Editors
About Dave HD
Sky 111/232, Virgin 128, HD: 129, Freeview 12
Dave proudly presents a plethora of original commissions; Crackanory, Ross Noble Freewheeling, Dave Gorman’s Modern Life is Goodish, and Dara O Briain: School of Hard Sums, all laden with the biggest names in British comedy. Not to mention a brand spanking new series with QI favourite Alan Davies in Alan Davies As Yet Untitled.
If that wasn't enough to whet your appetite we also have a stack of national treasures like QI, Red Dwarf X, Mock the Week and Have I Got News For You, plus the Red Bull trilogy of Cliff Diving, X-Fighters and the Soap Box races. And of course, we still have Top Gear.
Obviously we have to add, Dave is the UK’s most watched non-PSB channel broadcasting to over 27 million people per month, featuring hit US shows including the sharp-witted and sharp-suited Suits, the ludicrously addictive Lizard Lick Towing and the wonder that is Storage Hunters, the gift that keeps on giving.
UKTV is the multi-award winning media company that reaches over 42 million viewers every month.
UKTV's eleven imaginative brands - UKTV Play, Dave, Watch, Gold, Alibi, Yesterday, Drama, Really, Home, Eden and Good Food - include the most popular non-PSB channel in the UK and account for 9% of the British commercial TV market. The company’s most recent financial results showed record-breaking year–end revenue of £278m, and EBITDA of £67.4m. It invested a record £125m in programming and related launches last year, and is becoming an increasingly significant investor in UK creativity.
UKTV has a truly innovative model, curating brand-defining commissions, high-profile acquisitions and the very best of BBC, alongside programmes originally shown on ITV and Channel 4. The network embraces technology to deliver inspired channels to audiences through Freeview, Sky, Virgin Media, BT, TalkTalk, YouView and UKTV Play, and distributes its highly valued original programmes to 200 territories.
Now celebrating its 21st year at the forefront of digital television, UKTV - an independent commercial joint venture between BBC Worldwide and Scripps Networks Interactive, Inc. (SNI) - is proud to be the only British broadcaster to be recognised by Best Companies.