The Kumars to return with new TV show pilot
Television comedy's favourite Asian family, the Kumars, will return to television this autumn with a pilot for a new series of their chat show - this time for Sky1.
The Kumars At No. 42B will see the renowned Wembley quartet forced to relocate from their plush detached abode due to the tough economic conditions, and living in the flat - number 42B - behind the downmarket Hounslow gift shop that Sanjeev's dad, Ashwin, now runs.
Producers say: "Sanjeev is divorced from his wife of nearly two years, Bindiya, but they share custody of their precocious 8 year old daughter. Mum, Madhuri, is intent on setting him up with a high profile celebrity and has a keen interest in online dating agencies and of course Ummi (Sanjeev's Granny) is still there with her wicked sense of mischief and liquidised lunches."
The original Kumars At No. 42 ran for 7 series on the BBC between 2001 and 2006, starting on BBC Two, moving initially to BBC Choice, back to Two, and then to flagship station BBC One. Production company Hat Trick made 53 episodes of the comedy chat show, including a number of high-rated Christmas specials.
The series starred Sanjeev Bhaskar as the show's host, Sanjeev Kumar, attempting to present a serious celebrity chat show from his family home; with Vincent Ebrahim as his father, Indira Joshi as his mother - forever attempting to set him up with the show's famous and refined celebrity guests - and Meera Syal as Sanjeev's grandmother, Ummi: as overbearing as she was indiscreet and inappropriate.
In March last year, Bhaskar told The Sun that he hoped the chat show would return, stating: "All the cast are up for it. But I'd like to see it set above a shop to reflect the credit crunch. We never got politicians on the show when it originally aired but I'd love to, particularly ones from the Coalition."
Speaking today, Sanjeev Bhaskar said: "It's incredibly exciting to revisit these warm, oddball characters and to be given the opportunity to bring them up to date. We've tried to retain what viewers loved about the original show and to inject new characters and elements in a slightly new format that we hope will appeal to an even broader audience."
Sky commissioner Lucy Lumsden adds: "It's a welcome return for the Kumars. We're thrilled that they've chosen Sky 1 HD and Hounslow as their new home."
A pilot for the new Sky series will be recorded at The London Studios on Friday 18th May, and will be screened this Autumn.
The following clip shows Jennifer Saunders' interview on the show, from the fifth series, broadcast in November 2004.
American television channel USA Network has commissioned a full series adaptation of Channel 4's 2011 comedy drama, Sirens.
Actor Paul Shane, best remembered for his lead role in sitcom Hi-De-Hi!, has died at the age of 72.
Ben Miller, David Tennant and Billy Connolly are amongst the cast set to star in new film What We Did On Our Holiday, from the writers of Outnumbered.
Channel 4 has commissioned No Offence, a Victorian police comedy from Shameless creator Paul Abbott. It will also stage further Stand Up To Cancer events.
Isy Suttie has won the gold award in the comedy category at the Sony Radio Academy Awards 2013 for her Radio 4 show Pearl And Dave.
The cast of hit CBBC sketch show Horrible Histories are to star in Bill, a new comedy film about William Shakespeare.
Did you used to read the Mr Men books? If so, do you remember the adventures of bad Mr Nazi? Watch
A BBC Comedy sketch. Ever been on a bad date? Ever dated a dog? This committed Christian has... Watch
A video featuring every utterance of the word 'drink' in Father Ted. Try and keep count - it's hard! Watch
Celebrated writing duo Ray Galton and Alan Simpson are to be honoured with a blue plaque unveiling in June. Read