BBC Wales launches comedy writers scheme

Tuesday 14th November 2017, 4:54pm

  • The BBC has launched Find Me Funny, a new pilot initiative to find three new comedy shows
  • The pilot that makes the biggest impact will go on to be commissioned for a full series on BBC One Wales
  • Writers who can "represent Welsh culture with authenticity" are being invited to submit scripts
BBC Wales.

BBC Wales has launched a new initiative to find up to three new comedy programmes for BBC One Wales and BBC iPlayer.

Titled Find Me Funny, this new comedy pilot initiative is aimed at writers living or working full time in Wales, or "those writers who can represent Welsh culture with authenticity".

The aim is to broadcast the resultant sitcom / comedy drama pilots in 2018 and 2019.

The BBC says: "The pilot that makes the biggest impact - and gets the most laughs - will go on to be commissioned as a series."

The scheme was announced at by BBC Wales commissioner Nick Andrews at an industry event for programme makers and writers in Cardiff today. He said: "Wales has funny bones - we're a nation of comedy greats such as Ruth Jones, Rob Brydon and Rhod Gilbert, to name but a few. Now BBC Wales is looking for the next generation of comedy drama and sitcom writers. We're looking for a new and fresh look at the lives and characters of contemporary Wales and exciting and inventive voices that reflect the diversity of this country."

BBC commissioner Shane Allen adds: "This is a very exciting opportunity for us to unearth and support the next wave of Welsh comedy talent in a very practical and focused way. Gavin & Stacey was a smash hit BBC sitcom filmed in Wales, with prominent Welsh portrayal at its heart, that audiences continue to love - we'd like to build on that by giving a leg up to newer comedy writers and performers who are looking for their break."

Anne Edyvean from BBC Writersroom comments: "We're delighted to be working with BBC Wales on this exciting new opportunity for Welsh writers. We're really looking forward to reading scripts that tell surprising and funny stories about today's Wales."

The BBC says: "Do you love to make people laugh? Do your one-liners have people in stitches? Have you got a Welsh comedy idea that you're bursting to write? Then BBC Cymru Wales wants to hear from you."

How to submit a script

Submissions are being taken via the BBC Writersroom website. The deadline is the 15th January 2018.

All submissions will be guaranteed at least a ten-page read from the reading panel. Longlisted submissions will be read in full.

The BBC has issued some further guidelines:

- Submissions should be a comedy drama or situation comedy script for television and iPlayer of at least 30 minutes in length. They are not looking for any scripts in a 'mockumentary' style.

- They stress: "This is a comedy initiative designed to reflect contemporary Wales and is open to writers living or working full time in Wales, or those writers who can represent Welsh culture with authenticity."

- Writers may also attach a brief outline (1-3 pages) of further episodes and the series as a whole.

- Writers can submit a maximum of two scripts. These scripts should not have been previously produced.

- All scripts will be read "blind", i.e. without a name attached, until after full-read stage. They say: "Please remember to remove your name and contact details from your script."

- Scripts can be submitted with or without a production company attached. Where a script is unattached, the BBC will partner successful scripts with appropriate production companies.

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