Following on from the success of the multi-award winning Friday Night Dinner, Big Talk Productions once again teams up with Popper Pictures for this brand new comedy, exclusively for Sky Living HD. “GIVE OUT GIRLS” has been commissioned by Lucy Lumsden, Head of Comedy for Sky.
“GIVE OUT GIRLS” is a sharply observed, character led sitcom about a gang of four girls (and a couple of guys) who work in the world of ‘promotions’. Who are those girls out at 7am, dressed as light bulbs, giving you stuff you don’t want? It’s a world that’s instantly recognisable to anyone who’s ever done a job simply to pay the rent. It’s about working hard at avoiding hard work and how your colleagues by default become your mates.
The lynch pin of the group is MARILYN played by Kerry Howard (Laura in Him&Her). She’s breezy, witty and at 29 is getting a bit old for this game. The gang’s motto is ‘what happens on tour stays on tour’. Our group are let loose up and down the country promoting a different product in a different venue each week. Seeking excitement and adventure they inject as much fun and mischief into the day as possible… Also joining the cast is singer, Diana Vickers in her first television role. Vickers plays GEMMA, the baby of the group, who is bright and enthusiastic with a naive view of the world. Fellow promo girls include ZOE (Miranda Hennessy, 30 and Counting), a passive aggressive, self-loving dancer from New Zealand and POPPY (Cariad Llloyd, Cardinal Burns) who has her own unique way of looking at the world, she loves to party and is prone to obsessions when it comes to boys. The team work under DEBBIE, (Tracy-Ann Oberman, Friday Night Dinner, EastEnders) who’s in her mid-40s. She’s a Northern, menopausal trouser-suit wearing, nightmare boss of the company.
Antonia Hurford-Jones, Director Sky Living HD, said: “Give Out Girls is a fantastic addition to what is shaping up to be a really strong offering of original scripted programming on the channel, of which I am hugely proud. With its mix of brilliant characters and the situations they get themselves into, we feel confident this is a series our customers will both enjoy and identify with.”
Written by Tony MacMurray (The Last Chancers) and stand up comedienne Hatty Ashdown. Ashdown used her time spent as a promo girl as inspiration for the series. The series will join a growing list of original comedy commissions on the channel, which includes “The Spa” by “Benidorm’s” Derren Litten, “Love Matters”, a collection of six comic films about love, “Trying Again” written by the award-winning Simon Blackwell and Chris Addison and “Doll & Em”, co-created and starring real life best friends, Emily Mortimer and Dolly Wells.
Lucy Lumsden, Head of Comedy for Sky, added: “We’re delighted to be working with Big Talk and Popper Pictures on Give Out Girls. With brilliantly funny scripts and fabulous cast, we can’t wait to see Sky Living’s latest comedy offering hit our screens.”
Big Talk CEO Kenton Allen commented, “It’s terrific to be working with Robert Popper, Tony & Hatty on this really fresh and funny series. Everyone we talk to seems to have spent a period of their life doing this kind of job and with Hatty’s hilarious first hand experiences informing the scripts, the show’s authenticity shines through. It is remarkable the ridiculous things nice young people are asked to do in the name of a new type of Yoghurt.”
Robert Popper, said; “I’m so thrilled to be working with such an exciting pair of writers, and of course working again with the wonderful Kenton Allen. Altogether it’s one big ‘Hoorah’!”
“GIVE OUT GIRLS” has been commissioned for Sky’s by Head of Comedy, Lucy Lumsden and will be Executive Produced for Sky by Saskia Schuster. It will be Executive Produced for Big Talk by Chief Executive Kenton Allen and Robert Popper. The series will be produced by Jim Poyser (Shameless, Heading Out) and directed by Chloe Thomas (Horrible Histories, Angelo’s).
This latest commission is part of Sky’s commitment to increase its investment in original British content by 50% over the next three years. By 2014, Sky expects to invest £600 million a year in British programmes across its portfolio of channels. This commitment follows the success of home-grown comedies such as THE SPA, MOONE BOY, HUNDERBY, TROLLIED and STELLA, entertainment hits SINGDATE, GOT TO DANCE and A LEAGUE OF THEIR OWN, dramas such as STRIKE BACK, BEDLAM and MAD DOGS, and factual shows including ROSS KEMP EXTREME WORLD, AN IDIOT ABROAD and the BAFTA-winning documentary FLYING MONSTERS 3D.
The series starts filming in and around Manchester in May 2013 and is distributed internationally by BBC Worldwide.
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ABOUT SKY LIVING
Sky Living is a female skewing channel, with shows that cover a broad range of subjects which are relevant and interesting to our customers. But it’s not just for women; it’s a place which men can enjoy too. The channel embodies engaging storytelling, key characters and intricate relationships in the broader sense of the word. Sky Living offers a place for grown up escapism and is the number one pay channel among women in pay homes.
Following Sky’s recent commitment to investing £600million a year in home-grown programming by 2014 Sky Living recently announced a raft of new original commissions which will see names including; Lorraine Pascale, Naomi Campbell, Emily Mortimer, Dolly Wells and Simon Blackwell join the channel.
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With its rich mix of US quality drama and original scripted content, Sky Living works with some of the best and brightest talent both on and off screen, bringing its customers the best possible entertainment offering.
Sky Living HD is available on channel 107 cementing its place in Sky’s entertainment portfolio where it sits alongside Sky 1, Sky Atlantic and Sky Arts.
About Popper Pictures
Set up by Robert Popper (whose combined credits as a writer/producer and script editor include Friday Night Dinner, Look Around You, Peep Show, South Park, The IT Crowd, and the Inbetweeners) Popper Pictures specialises in making comedy shows. Channel 4’s hit sitcom, Friday Night Dinner was Popper Pictures’ first commission, which was co-produced with Big Talk. Popper Pictures also co-produce the BBC 2 sketch show, Watson & Oliver, starring double-act Lorna Watson and Ingrid Oliver, with the BBC in-house comedy department.
About Big Talk
Big Talk Productions is one of the UK’s leading film and television production companies. It has a fantastic slate of original TV comedy and drama, and a track record in developing talent such as Simon Pegg, Nick Frost and Edgar Wright whose cult television series Spaced paved the way for Big Talk’s hit films Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz and Paul.
In recent years Big Talk has gone from strength to strength with a string of award winning productions from BAFTA-award winning Rev (BBC2), to RTS Best Comedy Performance winning Him & Her (BBC3). Meanwhile Friday Night Dinner (Channel 4), and Threesome (Comedy Central), have enjoyed international awards and two highly successful series, and Chickens (Channel 4), written by and starring Simon Bird, Joe Thomas & Jonny Sweet and The Job Lot (ITV1) starring Russell Tovey and Sarah Hadland, both have upcoming series in 2013.
Big Talk made its move into drama programming in 2012 with The Town (ITV1), written by Laurence Olivier-winning playwright Mike Bartlett, starring Andrew Scott and Martin Clunes, and ratings shattering miniseries A Young Doctor’s Notebook (Sky Arts), which starred Jon Hamm and Daniel Radcliffe. Upcoming dramas include Youngers (E4), about a group of 16 year-old kids in East London, and Our Men (BBC2) about British Ambassadors and starring long-term collaborators Mitchell and Webb.
In film, Big Talk has made 21st century classics Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz. Also directed by Edgar Wright, Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World and Paul, while Joe Cornish’s directorial debut Attack the Block was released to fantastic reviews and awards. Sightseers, directed by Ben Wheatley, had its world premiere at Cannes and is now showing across the UK. Coming next are In Fear, Jeremy Lovering’s psychological thriller and Cuban Fury, a Salsa dancing rom-com starring Nick Frost, Rashida Jones, Chris O’Dowd and Ian McShane. The World’s End, the third collaboration between director Edgar Wright, starring Simon Pegg and Nick Frost, finished shooting December 2012 and is released Autumn 2013.