Sky Announces All-Star Comedy
There’s no denying that when it comes to new programming, Sky have been on an excellent run. Critically acclaimed comedies have been plentiful on Sky, but there’s yet to be a truly breakout comedy on the service. Blame it on the exclusivity of Sky’s platforms or a simple snobbishness about the programmes Sky make, but the company haven’t created a beloved national favourite… yet.
Now, Europe’s biggest pay TV provider have announced details of a new comedy destined for Sky Atlantic called Bliss, which was written and directed by Emmy Award-winning US writer, director, actor and stand-up comedian David Cross, perhaps best known for his role as Tobias in Arrested Development.
The new six part series joins Sky Atlantic’s line up of original comedy for 2017, which includes Sick Note and The Trip to Spain, the follow up to BBC’s The Trip and The Trip to Italy.
Joining the critically acclaimed writer and director is an all-star cast which includes Stephen Mangan (Episodes, Green Wing), Heather Graham (Boogie Nights, The Hangover) and Jo Hartley (This is England). Bliss is a co-production between Merman (Catastrophe, Divorce, The Increasingly Poor Decisions of Todd Margaret) and Big Talk Productions (Cold Feet, Mum) in association with David Cross’ Liberal Jew-Run-Media Productions for Sky Atlantic.
The series follows the complex double life of a man called Andrew (Mangan), a successful travel writer who, somewhat accidentally, has found himself living between two sets of wives and children who have no idea the other exists. Andrew, in a state of moral panic, has to find a way to balance his time and energies between wife Kim (Heather Graham) and other wife Denise. As Andrew’s two lives become ever harder to contain, so does his sanity and he finds himself going to increasingly drastic lengths to keep all of his plates spinning.
Stephen Mangan said: “I’ve always wanted two wives so this project is very close to my heart. And I get to work with the super-talent that is David Cross. I can’t wait.”
Heather Graham added: “David has written an incredibly funny and wonderful script. I’m excited to be working with him and Stephen on this project.”
David Cross said: “This project is unlike anything I’ve ever done before, in so far as I’ve never been to Bristol. Is it nice? Heard good things. Oh also there’s a scene that takes place in Weston-super-Mare, so there’s that.”
Sky’s head of comedy Jon Mountague said: “Bliss is going to be unmissable. It is the latest evidence of Sky Atlantic’s amazing output, which in terms of talent, scale and storytelling further establish the channel as a world leader not just in drama but in comedy too.”
The Sky information page doesn’t specify whether the programme will be filmed in 4K or just 1080p, but customers will be hoping it’s the former. With Sky moving towards Sky Q as standard and initial 4K broadcasts have been an outstanding success. Presently, the majority of Sky’s 4K content has come in the form of football, and whilst sport is an excellent vehicle for growth, they shouldn’t ignore areas like drama or comedy.