A sit-com in a biscuit factory?

Well, the biscuit factory bit is pure speculation, but it would appear that Doug Naylor is cheating on us. He’s got a new sitcom in the works, for BBC One, of all things. The first indication came via Doug’s tweet on Monday 10th February:

Off for casting session with @RichardDGNaylor for new sit-com starring two guys with initials HD + NM for channel with initials BBC O.

Well then. I, for one, can’t wait to see the new sit-com starring former Everton players Harry Dawson and Nigel Martyn.  Or possibly comedy actors Hugh Dennis and Neil Morrissey. Let’s sit tight and see which of these pairs Doug has gone for.

At first, it wasn’t clear how far along the commissioning route this project had progressed, but according to Naylor Junior’s subsequent tweet on Wednesday 12th February, things are happening imminently:

Great meeting this morning with the star of @DougRDNaylor ‘s new sitcom for BBC1. Start pre-production on Monday. Can’t wait!

That escalated quickly. To get to a stage where pre-production can begin has presumably taken a lot of work, which would explain why things have gone a little quiet on the Red Dwarf XI front. Probably best not to expect any announcements from UKTV in the near future, but you never know.

Never mind, though – congrats to Doug for getting the BBC interested in the type of audience he can attract once more. We will look forward to this with keen interest.

Tags: ,

36 Responses to A sit-com in a biscuit factory?

Jump to bottom

  1. EDIT: FUCK.

    Note to self – read first, make witty comments later.

    Two days it’s taken me to think of an actor with the initials HD. I finally come up with Hugh Dennis, and Symes hijacks the thread and makes it seem obvious.

  2. Congratulations – a sitcom on BBC 1 is nothing to sniff at. It’d be amusing if it was set in a biscuit factory.

    Having said that – what about RD XI? An announcement was apparently imminent last May at DJ. Since then, nothing.

    I know things change and actor availability may be an issue. Still.

  3. Congrats to Doug, i hope it goes well, but we can now assume this puts Red Dwarf on the back burner for at least the best part of this year and if this show turns out to be a hit… then who knows, but good luck to him i say especially on BBC O

  4. Well this has come out of nowhere, hasn’t it? It’d actually be really good to see Doug do a non-RD show, even if it means RD itself could be delayed. I’m looking forward to it.

    Also, my guess for the setting is a Horseshoe Emporium circa 1907. No particular reason why, I just wanted to add some representation to that time and place. Call the show “Shoe-In” and have Hugh Dennis play a zombie Queen Victoria and you’ve got yourself a hit!

  5. Personally I would be more interested in seeing a brand new Doug Naylor show than any new Dwarf (prepares to go into hidiing).

    Doug has now had 15 years since Series VIII and in that time he has commented about writing numerous scripts and must have come up with enough ideas to make a good show. If Hugh Dennis were to be the main star then that would be a massive plus as he is an excellent comic actor – which Chris Barrie and Robert Llewellyn weren’t in Series X (awaits brickbats).

    Although the BBC’s policy of commissioning sitcoms by aging writers rather than putting their faith in youth is deeply flawed (The Wright Way, The Royal Bodyguard, Still Open all Hours etc.), I’m hopeful that this might actually be rather pleasant.

  6. > Although the BBC’s policy of commissioning sitcoms by aging writers rather than putting their faith in youth is deeply flawed

    They also put plenty of faith in young writers, though usually their shows end up on BBC3, which is kind of what the channel is there for. :)

    Btw, Doug pisses all over Ben Elton and Roy Clarke (and not just in a dream I once had).

  7. Doug pisses all over Ben Elton and Roy Clarke (and not just in a dream I once had).

    Photos or it didn’t happen.

  8. >

    They also put plenty of faith in young writers, though usually their shows end up on BBC3, which is kind of what the channel is there for. :)
    Btw, Doug pisses all over Ben Elton and Roy Clarke (and not just in a dream I once had).

    Not really sure how anyone could argue that… If this show comes about then it will be Doug’s first solo show. He is a 58 year old newcomer. :)

    It will have to be some show to be better than Summer Wine in its heyday, Open All Hours or Keeping up Appearances…

  9. Could this new sitcom have anything to do with the one he previewed at Dimension Jump a few years back? Or did anything already happen with that? “Over to Bill” I think it was called.

  10. > Open All Hours or Keeping up Appearances…

    Those shows were all about Ronnie Barker and Patricia Routledge’s performances, as far as I’m concerned.

  11. Could this new sitcom have anything to do with the one he previewed at Dimension Jump a few years back? Or did anything already happen with that? “Over to Bill” I think it was called.

    Having never heard of this, I gave it a search on Google and it came up with this topic from 2010:
    http://www.ganymede.tv/forums/topic/doug-directing-bbc3-pilot/

    Turns out I made a comment in there. My memory surprises me sometimes.

  12. > Open All Hours or Keeping up Appearances…

    Those shows were all about Ronnie Barker and Patricia Routledge’s performances, as far as I’m concerned.

    Fair enough but his career speaks for itself. He is up there with John Sullivan, Clement and Le Frenais, David Renwick etc. as one of the great writers of British sitcom.

    Grant and Naylor as a pair could be put in the same bracket but all of Doug’s solo writing thus far has involved using characters that he and Rob created together so they cannot be compared.

    This is one of the things that makes this reported venture (if it happens) so interesting. The first solo Doug show in a 30+ year career…

  13. >The first solo Doug show in a 30+ year career…
    A lot of The 10%ers was written by Doug solely. Admittedly, Rob co-wrote the pilot, but Doug seemed to be custodian after that.

  14. Was the 10%ers good? I never saw it.

    >Grant and Naylor as a pair could be put in the same bracket but all of Doug’s solo writing thus far has involved using characters that he and Rob created together so they cannot be compared.

    I think that Jesus guy Doug created was very good.

  15. >The first solo Doug show in a 30+ year career…

    A lot of The 10%ers was written by Doug solely. Admittedly, Rob co-wrote the pilot, but Doug seemed to be custodian after that.

    This would be the first show that Doug has created though. (And if memory serves, many of the episodes from that show were written with co-writers?)

    >Was the 10%ers good? I never saw it.

    It won the British Comedy Award for Best ITV Sitcom I believe (not the most prestigious award but not chopped liver either). Interesting to see the difference between the pilot written by Rob and Doug (very dark and macabre with a suicide theme) and the series itself (much lighter and very traditional sitcom). Not a bad show but quite forgettable…which could explain why I’ve forgotten pretty much everything that happened in it after the pilot.

  16. That episode with Craig in it was amusing. I’ve got a video with most of s1 (was there a second series?) on it.

  17. That episode with Craig in it was amusing. I’ve got a video with most of s1 (was there a second series?) on it.

    Yep, 2 series.

  18. …but we didn’t, apparently.

  19. Ha ha! Si got tricked into watching Alan Titchmarsh!

  20. G&T Admin

    Hmm, Doug’s original tweet (the one quoted in the article) has been deleted.

  21. Hmmm. The plot (such as it is) thickens.

  22. It’ll all snowball after that. Within a week every news outlet in the western hemisphere will report the wrong info. Half the world will expect Doug & Co. to come out with the best damn Biscuit Factory sitcom they’ve ever experienced in their whole lives.

    But the headline doesn’t stop there. Over time it will mutate. “NAYLOR SITCOM TO FILM IN REAL BISCUIT FACTORY”; “NAYLOR TO OPEN ACTUAL BISCUIT FACTORY”; “NAYLOR AND BISCUIT FACTORY: FRIENDS OR SOMETHING MORE?” Eventually, it will be out of control and it will be impossible to stop. The misinformation has become fact, whether anyone wanted to correct it or not.

    Eventually, word of the Sacred Biscuit Factory will reach the rest of the world. The developing nations will speak in their many languages of Naylor and the Biscuit Factory. Eventually, a tribe will hear of this and will adopt this as their way of life. They will tell tales of Naylor the Scripted and his quest to find the promised lands of Bishal.

    There would be debates, followed by skirmishes, about what Biscuit was supposed to be the one made by Naylor. One faction say it was Gingerbread. Another says it was Jammie Dodgers. And although they tried to overcome their differences, the factions came across nuclear weapons and wiped each other out.

    What I’m trying to say is that this might lead to further misreporting. Maybe.

  23. Now, there’s a lesson in all this.

    From now on, to prevent this kind of thing ever happening again, fansites should be banned from including silly jokes that could ever possibly be misinterpreted as facts by people who might skim read and not notice certain things, such as question marks in headlines and hidden-away phrases like “pure speculation”.

  24. Foolishly I assumed it was a full series they are making and not a pilot. Not that that makes it any less of an achievement for Doug to be making this for BBC One…

  25. Some behind the scenes pictures, including the use of a crane. Seems to be set in a cobblestone street and near a field…

    My favorite locales!

  26. Sounds like Coronation Street and Emmerdale. On BBC One.

  27. http://t.co/wjg6Svbs1j Check out @chortle talking about our new sitcom ‘Over To Bill’

    (https://twitter.com/ThreeFeetProd/status/445694672737169408)

    If you want to.

    Salient points:

    In Over To Bill, [Hugh] Dennis plays Bill Onion, a meteorologist fired after craking an innocuous gag about the south of England being better than the north. This sets in motion a blackly farcical train of events begins which ends in his humiliation in front of a prospective employer from another network.

    Co-starring Men Behaving Badly star Neil Morrissey as Onion’s best friend Jez, Tracy-Ann Oberman as his wife and Helen George as Jez’s frosty partner and Bill’s nemesis, Over To Bill was written and directed by Red Dwarf co-creator Doug Naylor and produced by his son Richard. The pilot is a co-production between their recently formed production company Three Feet Productions and Baby Cow.

Jump to top / Jump to 'Recent Comments'

Leave a Reply