British and US comedy News
BBC Northern Ireland is set to offer audiences some welcome escapism in the latter part of 2020 as it announces its new autumn schedule of programming. With the longer evenings drawing in, laughter, fun, nostalgia and a little bit of magic are coming to BBC One Northern Ireland and BBC iPlayer in an effort to lift people’s spirits in the run up to Christmas. This autumn will see a focus on fresh comedy, light-entertainment formats and new talent, as well as hearing from some inspirational famous figures who have helped pave the way for younger generations in their respective fields.
Comedian Shane Todd will host Previously With Shane Todd. Broadcast as a one-off pilot programme last year, in this three-part series Shane casts his wry millennial eye over the BBC NI Archive, seeking out prime characters, crimes of fashion and ‘interesting’ pastimes, and unpicking the big news stories of the day.
Following on from his pilot sketch show earlier in the summer, funny man Paddy Raff has also been commissioned for a Christmas Special programme, which will be followed by a three-part series of The Paddy Raff Show (made by Nice One TV) in the New Year featuring many of Paddy’s most popular characters such as Nigel, the snobby social butterfly, and Granny Raff, the sharp-tongued senior citizen. Popular comedy programmes The Blame Game and Give My Head Peace (by The Hole In The Wall Gang) are also set to return to BBC Northern Ireland later in the year.
The trickery talents of mentalist and rising social media star Joel Mawhinney will be showcased in the new three-part series Life Is Magic (by Waddell Media), where Joel uses his skills of illusion at a range of events, from a school formal to Baby Gender Reveal party.
As well as bringing some new talent to audiences with Shane Todd, Paddy Raff and Joel Mawhinney, BBC One NI will also be hearing from a range of established household names from the worlds of broadcasting and sport, who have inspired younger generations.
The four-part series This Sporting Life sees presenter Stephen Watson chat one on one with four of Northern Ireland’s biggest sporting legends. Dame Mary Peters, Norman Whiteside, Dennis Taylor and Phillip McCallen talk to Stephen about the highs and lows of their impressive careers.
In her 80th year, trailblazing broadcaster Gloria Hunniford looks back on her remarkable career in the documentary Gloria – My Life On TV (by DoubleBand Films). Consistently breaking new ground for women in broadcasting, Gloria reflects on a career lasting more than 50 years which has made her one of the most familiar faces on television.
BBC One NI will also bring audiences some new light-entertainment formats. The new motoring series, Tricked-Out Tractors (by Green Inc), brings together a dream team of petrol heads who have been restoring beloved vintage tractor models, building custom, one-of-a-kind competitive monster machines, and crafting bespoke builds.
The feel-good film Our Weddings (by Afro-Mic Productions) takes a look back at six decades of getting hitched, as couples of different generations reminisce about their special day, alongside some unmissable archive footage from some of the most memorable celebrity weddings.