Hapless acquired by ViacomCBS Networks UK for MY5

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ViacomCBS Networks UK has acquired the broadcasting rights to the first series of new British comedy Hapless for Channel 5’s VOD service, MY5.

Written and directed by Sinyor, the deal was agreed by Damian O’Hara, Acquisitions Manager at ViacomCBS Networks UK, and ‘Hapless’ will be available on MY5 in March.

Starring Tim Downie (The King’s Speech, Paddington, Outlander), Geoffrey McGivern (Little Dorrit, Ghosts, Plebs), Lucy Montgomery (Tracey Ullman’s Show, The Armstrong and Miller Show) and Josh Howie (Call Me Alvy), the series follows Paul Green (Downie), a journalist for the UK’s fourth most successful Jewish newspaper, as he tries to find rubbish stories to please his narrow-minded editor (voiced by Sinyor).

Obsessed with his own view of truth and fairness, Paul aspires to bigger things – but his enquiring nature causes chaos and offence in a society where offence is easily taken. With a sweary sister (Montgomery) always on his case, a neurotic and desperately single best friend (Howie) getting in the way, and a teasing father (McGivern) behaving like a big brother, a day of calamity is only ever just around the corner for everyman Paul, in this fresh new satirical comedy series.

Gary Sinyor, writer and creator, said: “I wanted to create an edgy and mainstream comedy set in the crackers world we live in. ‘Hapless’ was inspired by US shows like Seinfeld and UK sitcoms like Rising Damp and Hancock. When I learnt that broadcasters were on the lookout for fresh, completed content, I got in touch in the hope that someone would see its potential. I’m delighted that ViacomCBS has picked it up for MY5 and I’m excited that the British public will be able to see the incredibly diverse range of comedy talent we have in the UK.”

Tim Downie, lead actor and executive producer, said: “The scripts were really funny, and combine that with working alongside a truly cracking crew and such wonderful comic actors, it was great fun. I’m really proud of ‘Hapless’. It’s funny, irreverent and has a great deal of heart and charm – I can’t wait for everyone to see it.”

Two episodes were released on the platform in December to qualify it for the upcoming awards season.


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