Expectation and BBC Comedy announce Wales regional partnership

Thursday 25th May 2023, 2:03pm

  • Expectation will work with the BBC on its second year of its Regional Partnership Scheme
  • It will see Expectation working with a Welsh production company to develop its processes and comedy slate
  • Run in conjunction with Creative Wales, it follows a successful first year in England's North East with Hat Trick Productions
Expectation

BBC Comedy is undertaking a second Regional Partnership Scheme.

Working in partnership with Creative Wales, they have selected Expectation as the "established comedy supplier" who will work with an emerging indie based in Wales to co-develop a slate of original comedy projects.

The BBC explains: "The intention is to strengthen and enhance local talent and project development in the region, putting more Welsh talent in front of and behind projects on BBC Comedy's slate."

Jon Petrie, Director of Comedy Commissioning says: "We're delighted to be back with another Regional Partnership scheme. This time in Wales. We're already seeing some exciting results from our first year in the North East [with Hat Trick] and we can't wait to see what Expectation and our emerging indies based in Wales cook up together. Thanks to Creative Wales for all their support."

Emma Lawson, BBC Commissioning Editor says: "After the success of last year's partnership in the North East, we're looking forward to going again, this time with the Welsh comedy production community. We can't wait to see what exciting new home-grown developments will come from the scheme with the support of our new partners, Expectation and Creative Wales."

Nerys Evans, Creative Director of Scripted at Expectation says: "I'm thrilled that Expectation is taking part in the partnership scheme. Since we started as a company we have especially loved nurturing talent and helping lots of people get their first breaks in TV narrative. Coming from Wales gives me huge pride, and having filmed both In My Skin and Bridget Christie's new series The Change in South Wales, it's obvious that there is so much untapped talent in Wales, both in front of and behind the camera. Myself and the scripted team here are excited to try and pass on our collective experience and insight to help put the spotlight on brilliant new and diverse Welsh talent on their home ground. We will relish working with local producers, I'm sure we'll make shows we can all be proud of."

Gerwyn Evans, Deputy Director, Creative Wales, said: "Over the past few years, Northern cities like Liverpool, Manchester and Newcastle have opened the doors for both new comedy talent and the biggest names on the circuit, and it's fantastic to see the Welsh capital being recognised as the BBC's latest City of Comedy. We have some brilliant comic talent here in Wales, the scene here is really growing and maturing, and we want to help nurture this and provide opportunities through partnership working. Our Regional Partnership Scheme with Expectation is a great start, and we can't wait to see the outcome of the project, with local comedy talent getting the recognition it deserves."

This follows on from the success of the inaugural Regional Partnership Scheme in 2022, which saw North East Screen choosing Hat Trick Productions as the established comedy supplier to work with an emerging indie based in the North East of England. Hat Trick spent time in the region working with the company, Sea & Sky Pictures, developing projects and talent, while providing business support and mentorship to help bolster the emerging company. The scheme has already seen success with the partnership winning character development funding and a script commission.

Adam Bouabda, Company Director and Executive Producer at Sea & Sky Pictures, says: "The partnership has been a brilliant experience, it's been absolutely invaluable for me and my company. As someone who has never worked in a big indie before, getting to see the inner workings and structure, has given us a clear focus on how to grow. Working with the Hat Trick team has been fantastic, they've taught me so much and I hope that we've been able to bring something to the table too. We've got some fantastic talent that we're working with and with the help of Hat Trick and the partnership, I'd like to think people will get to see some of that talent on screen soon!"

Detail of this year's Regional Partnership Scheme were announced in the United Nations of Comedy panel at the BBC Comedy Festival, taking place in Cardiff.

Applications are now open for Wales-based indies to apply. More details can be found here.

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Lee Mack

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