RTÉ, Irish Film Board to develop joint scripted comedy projects
| 15 March 2018

The scripted comedy initiative between Irish national broadcaster RTÉ and the Irish Film Board (IFB) has resulted in ten 10 projects progressing to the development stage where they will be given funding to further advance and pitch their ideas.

The projects are Bump from Blueink; Lifeguards, Underground Films; Headcases, Treasure Entertainment; Dad, Blueink; Spanners, written Paddy C. Courtney & Daniel O'Hara; Handy, Underground Films; In/Visible, Vico Films; The South Westerlies, Deadpan Pictures; Universally Challenged, Blueink; The Dog House. Four of these projects will go forward later in 2018 to produce a broadcast pilot, with one being selected to become a six-part series for RTÉ next year.

RTÉ and the IFB believe that these proposals for their half-hour scripted comedy programme will have the potential to be picked up by international distributors and international broadcasters, following on from recent successes including Can’t Cope, Won’t Cope and Bridget & Eamon which have been sold to the BBC and UKTV respectively.

Commenting on the announcement, Dermot Horan, RTÉ director of acquisitions and co-productions said: “We’re delighted to announce the next phase in this new project with the Irish Film Board. There is a huge level of comedy talent in this country and we’re proud to be in a position to foster and develop that talent through this initiative. The shortlist features a wide range of really exciting ideas with both local and global appeal.”

Added IFB chief executive James Hickey: “Over the last few years, we have witnessed the continued rise of Irish comedy on both the big and small screen, and we are delighted to partner with RTÉ on this exciting project which seeks to build on this success. It is an incredibly exciting time for Irish scripted comedy and we are committed to discovering new talents and developing existing and much-loved voices. We also particularly welcome such a strong representation of Irish female creative talent emerging through this initiative, and we believe that the successful projects will resonate with domestic and international audiences.”