Funny Girl will see Arterton star as Barbara Parker, a young woman from Blackpool finding her comic voice in the male dominated world on the 1960s sitcom. Charting her transformation from Blackpool beauty queen to London comedy superstar, Funny Girl will follow Barbara in the height of the swinging 60s, having just been crowned Miss Blackpool as she follows the call of London’s bright lights.
The eight-part series is set to be a family saga with the Costa Del Sol in the early 1980s as its backdrop, featuring a pulsating 80s soundtrack.
Created and written by Nick Love (Bulletproof), A Town Called Malice follows a crime family of petty thieves from South London called the Lords, who have fallen to the bottom of the criminal food chain and are not happy about it.
The prospect of a brand-new Michael Winterbottom drama starring Kenneth Branagh as a pandemic-beleaguered Boris Johnson has already got mouths watering among audiences and critics alike, and This Sceptred Isle is just one of Sky’s bumper line-up of 125 new Sky Originals promised for 2021.
Keeley Hawes, Rita Ora and Dame Judi Dench are among the other big names bringing star power to Sky, with the broadcaster announcing 30 exclusive original films and 30 documentaries, all part of an impressive roster that promises 50% more original content than last year.
Increasing output by 50% on last year, the broadcaster will be releasing 30 new Sky Original documentaries alongside a host of new drama, comedy, entertainment and arts series.
The new Sky Original TV shows announced are:
Written by Paul Abbott (Shameless), the drama will see Babou Ceesay (Rogue One) star as a lauded forensic pathologist. The series will air in autumn 2021.
“Up until then we’d been making pretty good telly – and we continue to make amazing telly – the year before Chernobyl we won the BAFTA for Patrick Melrose.
“But I think Chernobyl was the moment everybody said: ‘We’ve got to take you guys really seriously.’ We’re shoulder to shoulder with the very best people in the world now.”
To date, Chernobyl has won seven RTS awards and numerous other prizes.
Zai Bennett, Managing Director of Content at Sky UK, joins Minnie Stephenson in conversation to discuss Originals, Sky’s commitment to sustainability and diversity, opportunities for independent producers and the long-term impact of the pandemic on the media industry.
Created by Jez and Tom Butterworth and James Richardson, the Sky original drama follows the clashing civilisations and religions in the mythic world of Britannia, where Celtic tribes, psychedelic druids and brutal Romans battle to claim hold of the state.
Sophie will star as Hemple, the wife of Roman General Aulus, played by David Morrissey (The Singapore Grip). When her husband fails on his mission to capture Cait, the chosen one, Hemple steps in to finish the job.
The third season of There’s Something About Movies will see comedian Alan Carr return as host, with Jennifer Saunders (Absolutely Fabulous) and Michael Sheen (Quiz) returning as team captains and Tom Allen re-uniting with the crew.
Packed full of movie trivia, insider film insights and infamous re-enactments, this series will also feature the show’s first ever Christmas special.
The new studio is planned to house the production of multiple TV shows and films simultaneously and will be located in Elstree, close to the home of Star Wars and Strictly Come Dancing, Elstree Studios.
Backed by Sky’s recent new owner Comcast, the new studio will be developed in partnership with sister-company NBCUniversal and Legal & General.