Deborah Frances-White will host Next Week's News pilot

Wednesday 16th May 2018, 2:18pm

Deborah Frances-White.

Channel 4 has commissioned a new late-night satirical comedy from Merman Productions.

The company is set to film a pilot episode of Next Week's News, with comedian Deborah Frances-White as host.

Frances-White is a comedian and writer currently best known for her hit podcast The Guilty Feminist.

The channel explains: "Deborah will harness the topicality and influence of her critically acclaimed podcast in her own inimitable way as she plots not just to discuss the news agenda, but to take it on as well.

"The studio based show will be overseen by a female-led production team and Deborah is looking to galvanise her fan base of engaged followers to speak out on a range of issues. With a combination of irreverent stunts, celebrity guests, politicians, a house band and a smattering of topical talk, Next Week's News is bound to set the news agenda alight."

The 45-minute pilot is not intended for broadcast, but if successful a full series could be on air within months.

Syeda Irtizaali, Commissioning Editor for Entertainment at Channel 4, says: "Deborah Frances-White really is a voice for our times. Being huge fans of her podcast, we are delighted to have signed her to Channel 4 - absolutely no subject is out of bounds for Deborah."

Merman co-founders and executive producers Clelia Mountford and Sharon Horgan add: "There's no doubt in our minds that Deborah Frances-White will be as committed to making people laugh as she is to engaging them politically. We are very excited to be hanging on to her cape tail as she sets about bringing down the baddies and changing the world for the better. If any one can do it Deborah can."

Deborah Frances-White says: "One of the great joys of The Guilty Feminist podcast has been how much throbbingly vibrant female comedy talent it's been able to bring out into the light. Another is how engaged and activated our audience is. They are as ready to get out and playfully change the world for the better as they are to laugh.

"I couldn't have found a better home than Channel 4 or a better partner than Merman to take this energy to a wider audience and create topical mischief. The world is ready not just to sigh at this week's news but make next week's news better. Comedy is a powerful tool. Channel 4 has always been a home but also a rollercoaster. Let's go!'"

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