via press release:
MINISTRY OF LAUGHS LAUNCHES THE MOST IRREVERENT AND INVENTIVE BRITISH COMEDIES
The all new Saturday night comedy zone premieres June 18
BBC AMERICA’s new, two hour, comedy zone, Ministry of Laughs, showcases a new generation of British comedy. Kicking off with some of the most recent irreverent and inventive comedies from the UK, the lineup includes The Inbetweeners, with an all-new season of the BAFTA winning comedy; Come Fly With Me, the new project from Matt Lucas and David Walliams, creators and writers of their genre-breaking comedyLittle Britain and The Graham Norton Show, the UK’s most popular talk show. Also premiering in August is Friday Night Dinner created and written by Robert Popper (Look Around You, South Park, Peep Show). Ministry of Laughs premieres June 18, 10:00 pm - midnight ET/PT.
Perry Simon, General Manager, Channels, BBC Worldwide America says: “There’s nothing quite like British comedy and since joining last year one of my key ambitions has been to showcase the very best of it here on BBC AMERICA. In the early days of the channel, The Office broke the mold and virtually reinvented television comedy on both sides of the Atlantic. Ministry of Laughs will deliver a new generation of talented actors, writers and creators who are taking British comedy to a whole new place, and the brilliant Graham Norton Show is the perfect launch pad for this effort.”
Critically acclaimed series, The Inbetweeners is back for a final, and painfully funny, season with more tales of awkwardness, idiocy and sexual misadventure from Will (Simon Bird, Friday Night Dinner), Simon (Joe Thomas), Jay (James Buckley) and Neil (Blake Harrison). From writers and creators Damon Beesley and Iain Morris (Flight of the Conchords), the coming-of-age series was named the best new sitcom of 2008 at the British Comedy Awards and was recently honored once again with a 2011 BAFTA nomination in Best Male in Comedy for James Buckley’s portrayal as Jay. From gags to girls the boys hold nothing back during this comedy-packed season. The Inbetweeners premieres Saturday, June 18, 11:00 pm ET/PT.
Now in their final year of high school, the boys are looking forward to a new era of respect and credibility – and romance. Unfortunately, they quickly realize nothing’s changed – Will is still famous as the kid who literally pooped his pants in the exam hall, Jay is still up to his neck in imaginary ladies, Simon is trying to impress a new girl but can’t quite tear himself away from Carli and Neil is still insisting his dad’s not gay just because he plays badminton on a Tuesday.
This year Simon gets an actual, breathing girlfriend. Not that he spends any less time with Will, Jay and Neil, who still manage to tag along to everything. The boys also get involved with the school fashion show - some more enthusiastically than others – and Will is left home alone to look after the house for the weekend. From a new piercing to Simon showing the whole school what’s under his Speedos, naturally nothing goes as planned and they are still “the inbetweeners” in that they don’t manage to drag themselves up to being cool, in fact they are getting perilously close to geekdom.
CAST AND PRODUCTION CREDITS
Will Simon Bird (Friday Night Dinner)
Simon Joe Thomas
Jay James Buckley
Neil Blake Harrison
Carli Emily Head
Writers/Creators/Executive Producers Damon Beesley, Iain Morris
The Inbetweeners is a Bwark Productions production for E4.
When Carli organizes a fashion show for charity, Will decides to protest because it only includes the coolest and best looking kids. Simon has been asked to model and Jay gets upset that he wasn’t invited to participate, even though Simon only agreed to impress Carli. Meanwhile, Neal volunteers to help backstage and all of the boys get a little more than they bargained for. Episode one premieres Saturday, June 18, 11:00p.m. ET/PT
When Simon agrees to bring drugs to a concert in hopes of impressing a new girl he meets at school, he counts on Jay to deliver on one of his many exaggerated claims. As Neal helps Jay track down the illicit substance, Will takes a stance against it. When the time comes, the boys realize they’re all a little less experienced than they want to let on. Episode two premieres Saturday, June 25, 11:00 pm ET/PT
It’s Neal’s birthday and the boys seem less than excited to help him celebrate. Simon talks Will into going on a double date with his new girlfriend Tara and her friend Kerry. Simon’s principles are tested when he realizes that he’s going to have to let Kerry redesign his wardrobe if he wants to continue the relationship. Will’s are tested slightly more when he must decide if he wants to spend time with an embarrassing and slightly boring girl on the vague notion he might get to kiss her. Episode three premieres Saturday, July 9, 11:00 pm ET/PT
In attempt to get some time alone, Simon and Tara visit her sister, who’s away at college. The other boys invite themselves along – Jay so he can give Simon his “expert” sex advice, Neil because he doesn’t have anything better to do and Will because he doesn’t want to be left out. It isn’t long before the boys find themselves in rather unpleasant circumstances. Episode four premieres Saturday, July 16, 11:00 pm ET/PT
When Will is left home alone for the weekend, the other boys take full advantage of the situation. They run up the grocery bill, empty the fridge and rifle through his mom’s underwear drawer. Despite all the chaos, there’s a chance even Will might have a good time. That is of course until morning comes. Episode five premieres Saturday, July 23, 11:00 pm ET/PT
When Simon announces that he’s moving to Wales, Will decides to give him a proper send off with a camping trip in the countryside. Will draws on his scout training for the adventure but the same cannot be said for Jay, Neil and Simon who are not at all prepared for the great outdoors. Meanwhile, Neil turns to Mr. Gilbert for advice while he grapples with the possibility of new responsibilities. Episode six premieres Saturday, July 30, 11:00 pm ET/PT
COME FLY WITH ME
Come Fly With Me is a gloriously magnificent mockumentary set in an airport terminal, starring Little Britain’s Matt Lucas and David Walliams as they play over 50 characters from flight crew and check-in to paparazzi and passengers. The series was recently honored with a 2011 BAFTA nomination for Best Comedy Program and boasts a range of guest stars including David Schwimmer and Rupert Grint. Come Fly With Mepremieres Saturday, June 18, 11:30 pm ET/PT.
From the minds of writers and actors Lucas and Walliams, Come Fly With Me gives a hilarious perspective of Britain’s busiest airport and the people who work in and pass through it every day. Among the characters are Omar, the owner of Flylo airlines, Britain’s eighth favorite low cost airline; Precious Little, the world’s laziest coffee kiosk lady who always seems to close early and Melody and Keely, Flylo’s check-in girls who are severely lacking in customer services skills. Also featured are the snobby staff members of Great British Air, the country’s most prestigious airline. The skilled performances are enhanced by award-winning costume and make-up teams.
CAST AND PRODUCTION CREDITS
Writers/Creators/Actors David Walliams (Little Britain, Dinner For Schmucks, Stardust)
Matt Lucas (Little Britain, Bridesmaids, Alice in Wonderland)
Executive Producers Mark Freeland (Mongrels, Bellamy’s People, The Omid Djalili Show)
Geoff Posner (Little Britain, The Catherine Tate Christmas special)
Jed Leventhal (Mock the Week, Big Top)
Come Fly With Me is A Little Britain Productions, BBC and BBC AMERICA production.
The airport is abuzz with rumors that Spice Girl Geri Halliwell will soon be arriving, as 80-year-old Hetty Wolf prepares to take her very first flight with Great British Air. Husband and wife pilots Simon and Jackie sort out their marriage at 35,000 feet above Sweden and Omar Baba, owner of low-cost carrier FlyLo, is forced to do something about the lack of life-jackets on his planes. Meanwhile, Omar's most junior employee Taaj is on buggy duty and Chief Immigration Officer Ian Foot has found a suspicious passport. Episode one premieres Saturday, June 18, 11:30p.m. ET/PT
David Schwimmer gets questioned at customs for suspicious DVDs he’s bringing to the UK for Matt LeBlanc while a 'sudden wing malfunction' delays FlyLo passengers on their way to Malaga. Meanwhile, Melody and Taaj get tough with FlyLo's new baggage allowance regulations. Happy Burger welcomes their newest employee and pilot-to-be, Tommy, as passengers Peter and Judith share the details of their unfortunate FlyLo cruise. Episode two premieres Saturday, June 25, 11:30 pm ET/PT
Flylo ground crew Taaj Manzoor bumps into Harry Potter actor Rupert Grint, as Customs Officers Roberts and Stewart apprehend a man who is attempting to smuggle drugs into the country. Meanwhile, Great British Air's snobbiest employee, Penny, has to come to terms with passengers from the lower class using her exclusive first-class cabin. Episode three premieres Saturday, July 9, 11:30 pm ET/PT
There is a bumpy ride ahead for husband-and-wife pilot team Simon and Jackie when Simon's one-night stand with an air hostess is scheduled to work on their flight to Barcelona. Low-cost airline FlyLo becomes carbon-neutral at the insistence of owner Omar Baba and Tommy Reid reveals the object of his desire is one of FlyLo's glamorous check-in staff. Up in First Class, Penny gets a discreet visit from a member of the Royal Household who reveals that apples are the only fruit eaten by Princess Margaret. Episode four premieres Saturday, July 16, 11:30 pm ET/PT
Immigration Officer Ian Foot pulls in Taaj for questioning as part of a random security check, and Our Lady Air’s Fearghal reveals the extreme measures he’s willing to take to get nominated for Steward of the Year. Tommy Reid finally gets his chance to apply for pilot training, and over on the FlyLo desks, it's Helen's last day and Melody and Keeley are about to find out which of them is going to get promotion. And then Omar gets accused of sexually harassing his staff. Episode five premieres Saturday, July 23, 11:30 pm ET/PT
On their latest disastrous package holiday, Peter and Judith have got mixed up in the dark arts of voodoo while Tommy finally gets his interview to be a pilot. Fearghal has his fingers crossed for a Golden Trolley at the Steward of the Year Awards, and Penny Carter actually has to do some work for a change. Paparazzi photographer Buster has been suspended after an incident involving Dame Judi Dench and airline owner Omar Baba deals with his latest staff mutiny when the whole of FlyLo's ground crew goes out on strike. Episode six premieres Saturday, July 30, 11:30 pm ET/PT
Melody and Keeley
Melody and Keeley work as check-in girls for the low-cost airline FlyLo. Their commitment to customer service is second to more or less everyone. Big and small problems are all treated the same, which is that they are ignored.
Fearghal is proud to be an air steward for low-cost Irish airline, Our Lady Air. He has a large family, all of whom work for Our Lady Air. Fearghal is keen to win the Golden Trolley for the steward of the year. He already knows he's the best so it shouldn't be a problem.
Simon and Jackie Trent
Pilot Simon and co-pilot Jackie are Britain's first husband and wife flying team. It used to just be Simon who flew but, following her spouse's indiscretion with an air stewardess, Jackie opted for a career change and now accompanies her husband on all his flights.
Ian is the airport's Chief Immigration Officer. He does not know a great deal about maps or geography but this will not stop his eternal vigilance, as he seeks to stop undesirables from entering the UK. He is not very popular at work but he puts this down to the need to maintain a professional distance from his colleagues.
Mickey and Buster
Mickey and Buster are the airport's in-house press photographers. They have taken pictures of some of the most famous people in the world as well as Piers Morgan.
Moses is the executive passenger liaison officer for Great British Air. He is in charge of taking care of first class and VIP passengers. He deals with them all with his trademark tact and charm. Many years have taught him that there is no problem that can't be solved with the offer of a complimentary orange juice and a copy of the Daily Mail newspaper.
Precious has worked at the airport's coffee kiosk for many years. She is friendly, likeable and devout. However, due to a series of events entirely out of her control she does very occasionally have to shut up shop ever so slightly early.
Omar is the owner of the nation's "eighth favourite low-cost airline" FlyLo. He has worked hard to make his airline the great success it is and knows the frequent news stories about poor service and dangerous conditions are down to a biased and unfair media.
Taaj works in the airport as one of FlyLo's roving ground staff. His ambitions however rise above all that. Taaj knows things and knows people and is going places and he'll be there soon, you get me?
Tommy has always wanted to work in the aviation industry and dreams of becoming a pilot some day. He knows how important it is to get relevant experience, which is why he’s working at the airport Happy Burger.
Penny is the snobby guardian of Great British Air’s First Class cabin. She is very serious about her career with the UK’s most prestigious airline.
THE GRAHAM NORTON SHOW
Last season Graham Norton welcomed Justin Bieber, Matt Smith, Rihanna, Dame Helen Mirren, Kate Hudson, Bruno Mars and Ashton Kutcher to his London studio. Now the UK’s biggest talk show returns for a ninth season with Lady Gaga, Robert Pattinson, Hugh Laurie, Adele and more all stopping by for a chat. The show is truly based on the people, trends, stories, and aspects of celebrity culture that interest Norton most. And as always, expect Norton’s trademark comedy monologues and eccentric stories. The Graham Norton Show premieres Saturday, May 7, 10:00pm ET/PT.
Saturday, May 14 Robert Pattinson, Reese Witherspoon and Hugh Laurie
Saturday, May 21 Gwyneth Paltrow, Lady Gaga, Jason Byrne and Geoffrey Rush
BBC AMERICA delivers U.S. audiences high-quality, innovative and intelligent programming. Established in 1998, it has been the launch pad for talent embraced by American mainstream pop culture, including Ricky Gervais, Gordon Ramsay, Graham Norton, and successful programming formats including ground-breaking non-scripted television like Top Gear and top-rated science-fiction like Doctor Who. Owned by BBC Worldwide, the commercial arm of the BBC, BBC AMERICA has attracted both critical acclaim and major awards including an Emmy, four Golden Globes and ten Peabody Awards. The channel attracts one of cable’s most affluent and educated audiences and is available on digital cable and satellite TV in more than 68 million homes. It broadcasts in both standard and high-definition, with content available On Demand across all major digital platforms. Online, www.bbcamerica.com is the place to go to dig deeper into pop culture with a British twist.