With an emphasis firmly on script development, The Sitcom Mission is an international sitcom writing competition, 'The X Factor for sitcoms'. It showcases 15-minute sitcom scripts in front of the British TV and radio comedy industry.
The Grand Finals have been judged by a who's who of British comedy commissioning, including Shane Allen (Channel 4/Head of BBC Comedy); Jane Berthoud (BBC Radio); Sarah Farrell (Comedy Central); Lucy Lumsden and Ben Boyer (Sky); Saskia Schuster (ITV); Myfanwy Moore (ITV); Gregor Sharp, Tilusha Ghelani and Chris Sussman (BBC TV); Paul Schlesinger (Hat Trick); and Iain Coyle and Tanya Qureshi (UKTV Commissioning).
One of the runners-up in 2011, In The Meantime, by Ciaran Murtagh and Andrew Jones, was optioned by Hat Trick Productions. Andrew says, "This is a great opportunity to have your work read and assessed by lots of very useful people!" Previous winners Thunderer by Bryn Mills, What Next? by Emma Edwards and Abigail Dooley, Yo Valet by Snez Naik and Blue Sky Thinking by James Huntrods were also optioned by Hat Trick. Last year's winners, Colin Elves and Ben Hogan, had a script optioned by Yellow Door Productions as a direct result of winning the competition.
The Sitcom Mission has the central aim of getting a situation comedy commissioned either on TV, radio or online. We've evolved the competition and the theme now is script development. We're looking for writers who can take notes, are tenacious, thrive on feedback, love re-writing and adore the process just as much as the end result.
Each year we work with up to four writers (or writing partnerships/groups) in order to develop their sitcoms and take them to an industry showcase in London. We've got the ear of the independent production companies, and the four winners will get feedback from development officers at companies such as Avalon, Bwark, So Television, Channel X, Left Bank and others that are coming on board all the time.