ITV2 orders ancient Roman sitcom Plebs

Thursday 23rd August 2012 @ 4:52pm

Plebs. Image shows from L to R: Stylax (Joel Fry), Marcus (Tom Rosenthal), Grumio (Ryan Sampson). Image credit: RISE Films.ITV2 has ordered a new sitcom series set in ancient Rome.

As previously reported, a pilot episode Plebs was filmed in Bulgaria earlier this year. The trial was deemed to be a success, and ITV2 have now ordered a six-part series.

Plebs is described by the network as "a thoroughly modern comedy in an ancient setting". The programme will is to star Tom Rosenthal (Friday Night Dinner), Joel Fry (White Van Man) and Ryan Sampson (After You've Gone).

The trio will play three 'desperate young men' who 'try to get laid, hold down jobs and climb the social ladder in the big city - a city that happens to be Ancient Rome'.

Rome is traditionally imagined as the home of emperors and senators, generals and gladiators, a dignified theatre of pomp and ceremony. But what about the little guys, the wasters - new to the big city, stuck in office jobs, unable to get the girls? Unlikely to be immortalised in the annals or memorialised in a frieze, Marcus, Stylax and their lazy slave with an attitude problem, Grumio, are 'essentially just a bunch of plebs'.

The show will also star Smack The Pony's Doon Mackichan as the boys' ruthless boss. Flavia is an expert manipulator with a private life that's the stuff of legend.

Plebs is being written by Sam Leifer and Tom Basden. Leifer's previous credits include directing How Not To Live Your Life, and script editing the BBC university-set series Off The Hook, whilst Basden's CV includes Fresh Meat and hit Radio 4 sitcom Party.

ITV commissioner Angela Jain says: "From the moment I read the script and met the writers Sam and Tom, I felt if they could pull off the pilot we could be on to something very special. The team have delivered the most wonderful, unique and funny pilot so it was a no-brainer to go to series. It has been a joy working with such a wealth of talent on and off screen and it will be a privilege to share this with the ITV2 audience."
 
Sam Leifer and producer Teddy Leifer add: "We've assembled a fantastic team to make Plebs and ITV's support for the show has been unswerving. Most importantly, the cast look delightful in skimpy tunics and we can't wait to show the world."

The ancient setting is of course nothing new to sitcom, with a very similar ancient Italian setting having been utilised for smash-hit 1970s Frankie Howerd vehicle Up Pompeii! and its feature-film spin-off. Here is the pilot episode of Up Pompeii!:


Our Guide to 'Plebs'

 

Latest News

Holly Willoughby to host new ITV panel show

Holly Willoughby to host new ITV panel show

Holly Willoughby has signed up to present Play To The Whistle, a new comedy panel show for ITV focused on the world of sport.

ITV2 to show Keith Lemon's Back To The Future Tribute

ITV2 to show Keith Lemon's Back To The Future Tribute

The character Keith Lemon is to star in a one-off special on ITV2 celebrating the 30th anniversary of the first Back To The Future film.

Comedy Central reveal Russell Howard's new show

Comedy Central reveal Russell Howard's new show

Russell Howard's Stand Up Central, which launches in April, will feature guests including Doc Brown, Katherine Ryan and Joe Wilkinson.

BBC Two orders Charlie Brooker election special

BBC Two orders Charlie Brooker election special

Charlie Brooker will return to BBC Two in the run-up to the May General Election with a new Wipe special focusing on the political campaign.

Filming starts on Series 7 of Doc Martin

Filming starts on Series 7 of Doc Martin

Martin Clunes and the rest of the Doc Martin cast are now in Cornwall to film Series 7 of the hit ITV comedy drama.

Frankie Boyle to return to iPlayer with post-election special

Frankie Boyle to return to iPlayer with post-election special

Frankie Boyle will follow the popularity of his 2014 Scottish independence referendum special with a new iPlayer programme about the May General Election.

Get More News

In The Press

In The Press

The latest press clippings from the newspapers and various internet blogs.

Newsletter

Newsletter

Subscribe to our mailing list to get news and more in your inbox every Monday.

Twitter

Twitter Feed

You can follow us on Twitter too. We post the latest news and gossip every evening.

RSS Feed

RSS Feed

Subscribe to our RSS feed to get our headlines in your news reader software.

Ray Peacock: taboo comedy

Ray Peacock: taboo comedy

Ray Peacock explains why he has decided to open up about his suicide attempt in his latest stand-up show. Read

Dad's Army only just made

Dad's Army only just made

A speech by TV executive Huw Wheldon revealed that the BBC nearly didn't make the Dad's Army series. Read

Graham Fellows interview

Graham Fellows interview

Graham Fellows will celebrate his 30th year as John Shuttleworth with a big gig - but could it be his last hurrah? Read

Laura Aikman interview

Laura Aikman interview

Laura Aikman talks about joining the cast of Bluestone 42, and how she was 'liquid sweat' filming the show. Read

Nathan Caton interview

Nathan Caton interview

Stand-up comedian Nathan Caton talks to us about various topics, including his ideal comedians football squad. Read

Images from '50 Comics'

Images from '50 Comics'

Check out some striking pictures from photographer Matt Crockett's book of comedian portraits, 50 Comics. View

Milton Jones interview

Milton Jones interview

Milton Jones talks about big hair, bad shirts, Mock The Week, his mammoth 2015 tour and other topics too: Read