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.”

The Random Bandits are back again with the 4th instalment in the series, featuring more jokes and shenanigans then you can shake a stick at!!!

Check out the latest twisted takes on the world that will make you feel good, with The Flys, Shoe Horn and cult here Dave Beeline below now.

To catch up and watch all of the four films in the Random Bandits series head to

Don’t forget to keep your eyes peeled for the final film when its released on June 1st.

Saturday 11 April at 9:00pm on C4

Network premiere of Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris’s double-Oscar-winning comedy, starring Abigail Breslin as Olive Hoover, who wins a place at a beauty pageant in California. Because money is tight, her family have to undertake the 700-mile journey by camper van. As the Hoover clan hit the road, the mix of feel-good fun and mordant black humour combine with a stellar cast for one of the best recent indie movies. Starring Greg Kinnear, Toni Collette, Alan Arkin, Steve Carell and Paul Dano.

Saturday 21 March at 9:00pm on E4

The funniest films of all time battle it out in this definitive list of The 50 Greatest Comedy Films , as voted for by the British public.

Sunday 15 March at 9:00pm on C4

Channel 4 supports Comic Relief 2009 this weekend with the untold story behind Peter Kay’s star-studded charity video Is This the Way to Amarillo? , revealing how a simple sketch for Comic Relief became the biggest-selling song of the year and a national obsession during the summer of 2005. Featuring Peter Kay, Sir Michael Parkinson, Gary Barlow, Matt Lucas and Richard Curtis.

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