Stephen Fry and UK comedy heavyweights to appear on Sky1

Sky1 has commissioned a load of comedy shows starring some big comedy names as it aims to be taken seriously in the field.

Dawn French, Victoria Wood and Stephen Fry have been announced as taking part in shows, along with Gavin and Stacey’s Ruth Jones and, most importantly, some new talent.

First to tell you about is Ruth Jones’ new show, Stella, which sees the funnywoman playing a fortysomething mother. It’ll be set in South Wales and should air in 2012.

Former Coronation Street star Sally Lindsay, takes the lead in new show Mount Pleasant where she plays a thirtysomething Mancunian, alongside The Street’s Daniel Ryan.

The big guns are out (Fry, Wood and French) to appear in Little Cracker, a season of autobiographical short films that relate real-life incidents from the protagonists’ past. That sounds like it could be fun.

Meanwhile, Catherine Tate, Kathy Burke and Bill Bailey will also be directing their tales and the films will be broadcast over the Christmas season.

There’s also a new show from newcomers. It’s called Jinsy, and is a series of eight programmes written by Chris Bran and Justin Chubb and features the weird and wonderful goings on of the inhabitants of fictional eponymous island.

Lucy Lumsden, who commissioned shows including The Thick of It and The Catherine Tate Show when she was at the BBC, said: “It’s been an exciting time spreading the good news about Sky’s investment in comedy and I’m delighted that we’ve been able to attract a wealth of comedy talent … We’re providing a home for on- and off-screen talent to flex their creative muscle; somewhere for their work to be nurtured.”

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I'm Mof Gimmers.

I've been writing about TV for a long time. I love it and loathe it in equal measures. I'm pretty sure the TV feels the same away about me too.
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