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So Hot Right Now #22

16 Mar
Welcome to The Velvet Onion – the central hub for an interconnected range of alternative comedy and more. Click through for the LATEST NEWS, and see what’s so hot right now take a look below.

House of Fools welcomes Way & Davis

Series Two of House of Fools continues apace this week, with Episode Four featuring guest appearances from Nurse star Esther Coles, stand-up Romesh Ranganathan and TVO regulars Tony Way and Tom Davis.

© Pett TV / Christopher Baines

© Pett TV / Christopher Baines

The latter three play a trio of hard-as-nails dancers, who threaten to wipe the floor with Vic, Bob and Beef at the Danceathon event over at Julie’s bistro. Though when Julie isn’t dealing with Bosh’s poor customer service, she’s dealing with a rat infestation.

As ever, Vic Reeves and Bob Mortimer lead the ensemble, alongside Matt BerryDan SkinnerMorgana RobinsonDaniel Simonsen and Ellie White. TVO saw this episode being filmed in Salford back in the Autumn when we went to interview the cast, and while it was a struggle to put together, we’re confident the end result is an absolute treasure. You can see for yourselves on Monday 16th at 10pm, over on BBC Two.

Nurse continues with Day and Hoult

Episode Two on Nurse – the new show from Paul Whitehouse starring himself alongside Esther Coles – continues on Tuesday.

© Des Willie

© Des Willie

With Whitehouse starring as a cavalcade of troubled characters, and Coles portraying the community psychiatric nurse who has to see to them all, the show has charmed critics with its off-kilter comedy and a respectful look at mental health.

Co-starring Simon DayColin Hoult, Vilma Hollingberry and Rosie Cavalero, this week’s episode features a guest appearance from none other than Fast Show veteran Arabella Weir, and you can catch it on Tuesday at 10pm over on BBC Two.

Justin Edwards goes In And Out Of The Kitchen

Here’s one that slipped us by last week – as we reach the middle episode of a three-part sitcom starring Miles Jupp and Justin Edwards entitled In and Out of the Kitchen.

© Gary Moyes / BBC

© Gary Moyes / BBC

The show is based on the Radio 4 comedy of the same name, and charts the life of cookery writer Damien Trench (Jupp) and his partner Anthony (Edwards). The show also stars Philip Fox, Brendan Dempsey, Ade Ofeyoso and Margaret Cabourn-Smith, who just so happens to be the wife of one Dan Tetsell.

It’s a huge treat to not only see a show focusing on a middle-aged gay couple on our screens without any ‘novelty’ hoo-har about it, but also to see one that’s so expertly written and delightfully performed by its talented cast, and we urge you to catch up with the series, with Episode One available on iPlayer now.

In the second episode, which airs on Wednesday evening at 10pm on BBC Two, Damien is banned from the kitchen for the day as Anthony prepares their Valentine’s meal. However, his desperation to know more is soon the last thing on his mind, as his planned documentary about the culinary habits of the great poets is thrown into jeopardy.

More Moone-ing around for O’Dowd and company

Over on Sky 1, the third series of Chris O’Dowd‘s Moone Boy continues with a very special guest star this week, in the form or legendary broadcaster Sir Terry Wogan.

© Sky Corporate

© Sky Corporate

In this third episode, Martin (the ever brilliant David Rawle) finds out that every clip played on a TV video out-take show earns £250 – so he and Padraic get hold of a camera and try to film themselves doing something stupid. Meanwhile, the Moone household is bursting at the seams when Fidelma, Dessie and baby Rose move in, leaving Liam at the end of his tether.

One of the great charms about Moone Boy is that, though written by and starring a big star like O’Dowd, he is not afraid to let his character take a back seat to allow others to shine. And when you’ve got an ensemble like this, who can blame him? You can see the episode for yourselves on Monday 16th at 9pm.

Pomipidou Continues

Sunday evenings are that little bit warmer and fuzzier with Pompdiou around for teatime.

© BBC/John Stanley Productions/Natalie Seery

© BBC/John Stanley Productions/Natalie Seery

The utterly bonkers and penniless aristocrat is played with sheer delight by Matt Lucas, who is ably supported by the sublime Alex MacQueen as his put upon butler Hove. This week, Pompidou wants to spend Valentine’s Day with a date, and signs up to a dating agency to make his wish come true. Except, his idea of romance isn’t to everyone’s taste.

With special guest appearances by Anita Dobson and Paul Putner, this is another charming way to spend 25 minutes in the company of Lucas’ madcap alter-ego. It may not be to everyone’s taste, but it seems that ol’ Pompi has found his audience, and you can join them on Sunday 22nd at 6:35pm.

TVO IS FIVE all over again

As this weekend marked five years since we became a dotcom, and we had some bonus birthday messages that came in too late to be in our first round-up, we’ve extended our TVO IS FIVE video to include lots of new treats. You can see the results below.

And the rest

As ever, there’s so much going on in the realm of the Velvet Onion, it’s quite easy to miss things. As well as our News pages, the best way to keep track is with our Twitter feed, and here’s a few highlights from throughout the week gone by. Until next time, keep on peeling!

The Velvet Onion Is Five Again

15 Mar

The Velvet Onion is proud to bring you an updated version of our TVO IS FIVE video for your perusal, featuring a cavalcade of comedy legends wishing us a very happy birthday.

Some of you may remember at the end of January, The Velvet Onion marked its official fifth anniversary with a string of birthday messages from regular faces on these pages for the last five years.

The very next day, we got our first late message. And they kept coming in – so much so that we decided we’d soon have to either make a second instalment, or extend the original video. As well as these extra clips, a handful of names who wanted to get involved tried to move the earth to get a video to us, but for various reasons from technological breakdowns to hectic work schedules to full blown flu-outbreaks, just didn’t quite manage to get a message across.

As a result, we made the decision to delay the second video for as long as possible, in the hope that a few more people could get involved. This weekend just gone by marks, in essence, our second birthday – as we became a real, fully fledged .com on March 14th 2010, following six weeks of vibrant positivity around our initial activities. Hey, if it’s good enough for the Queen to have two birthdays, it’s good enough for us, too!

So here, at long last, is Version 2.0 of the TVO IS FIVE video. New to this collection are birthday messages from Paul FootRich FulcherRichard GloverJohn HopkinsPaul KayeTom MeetenRichard SandlingMichael Smiley and Dolly Wells.

Also included in the video are the previous messages from Katy BrandDave Brown, Neil ColeJames CookStephen EvansColin Hoult (and his various alter-egos), Rufus JonesDave McNeill, Spencer MillmanBob Pipe, Holly Jane ShearsWaen ShepherdRachel Stubbings, Tony WayPhil Whelans, James Wren and Jacqueline Wright.

Once again, enormous thanks to everyone who sent us a message and is included in the video. We love you from the bottom of our hearts, and really appreciate your efforts. Whilst we’re here we must say a huge thank you to the wonderful Tracy Ann Oberman, who tried to get a video message to us THREE TIMES, only for technology to block her attempts at every turn. We also greatly appreciate everyone else who wanted to get a message to us, but had various reasons for not managing it in time – we know you tried, and are grateful for that at least.

To still be doing this over five years after we started is a testament to the love we’ve received from those we cover on our pages, and the fact that you, dear reader, keep on coming back for more. Here’s to the next five, eh?

Happy Birthday to us, Happy Birthday to us!

30 Jan

This weekend marks TVO’s fifth anniversary, so what better way to celebrate than to grab as many video messages from the good folk we feature on these pages as physically possible, and put them all together for your enjoyment?

Huge thanks to everyone who contributed a message, as well as to all of those who really wanted to but have various deadlines and personal matters to take care of that have kept them out of this compilation. If you’re one of our regulars, and you haven’t been featured in this video – we’re still up for hearing from you, so do get in touch asap!


28 Jan
© Toyah Willcox

© Toyah Willcox

Actress and post-punk legend Toyah Willcox has been confirmed to star in Steve Oram‘s directorial debut, Aaaaaaaah!

We first told you about the film a few weeks ago, after hearing it discussed in hushed tones for some time, but the news of Toyah’s casting came to us twice over yesterday evening – first via Oram himself at Julian Barratt’s live show, then via Toyah’s web-master as the news was revealed on her official website.

Typically oddball, the film will contain no spoken dialogue, with the cast – Oram, Tom MeetenJulian Barratt, Tony Way, Waen Shepherd, Julian Rhind-Tutt, Hannah Hoeskra and now, Toyah Willcox, will communicate like monkeys.

Low-budget and self-financed, the film will also be produced by Andy Stark (Sightseers), and Steve has promised “lots of inappropriate sex and violence”.

Oram and Meeten will play marauding characters who encroach into the hostile territory of the kitchen, and Barratt is the former alpha-male who, now deposed, lives in the garden.

It sounds like a surreal treat, of course, so the addition of Ms Willcox to the project is the icing on the cake.  For the uninitiated, Toyah first became famous as an actress at the height of the punk movement, before forming her own band and recording a number of smash hits such as I Want To Be FreeThunder In The Mountains, It’s A Mystery and Brave New World.  Imagine a cross between Siouxsie Sioux, David Bowie and Yoko Ono, and you’re not too far off.

Going solo in 1985, Toyah continues to record music to this day, with 15 studio albums and a number of critically acclaimed side projects to her name, plus regular sell-out concert tours.  She’s also been a lifelong influence on several TVO regulars – most notably Alice Lowe, who based the short film Junglophilia on the singer’s 80s excesses.

We can’t wait to find out more.  Until then, revisit Junglophilia – directed by Jacqueline Wright and co-starring Barunka O’Shaughnessy – below.

Be Comically Challenged By Two TVO Folk

23 Nov

© United Agents

Two TVO faces will be appearing tomorrow at LOCO’s series of talks about challenging comedy. Barunka O’Shaughnessy and Jacqueline Wright are two of the speakers at the event which is taking place at Hackney Attic, Hackney Picturehouse in London.

Co-hotsed by LOCO and Underwire Film Festival, Challenging Comedy offers a packed afternoon of discussions, revelations, trade secrets and live workshops which explore the ways in which women writer-performers challenge conventional ways of looking at others, and of presenting themselves.

The session runs from midday tomorrow – so get your skates on! – until 5pm (with drinks afterwards) and tickets are £25, which includes lunch.

The full list of guest speakers includes:

Costumer designer Claire Finlay (NIGHTY NIGHT, GAVIN & STACEY, HIM & HER)
2013 Fringe First award winner Bryony Kimmings (SUPERSTAR ROLE MODEL, SEX IDIOT, 7 DAY DRUNK).
Writer/Performer Barunka O’Shaughnessy (SCHOOL OF COMEDY, HUNDERBY, BEEHIVE)
Writer/Performer/Producer Poppy Roe (THIS WAY OUT)
Director Jacqueline Wright (OUT OF WATER, LIFESPAM, STIFFY).

For more information about the event, including the schedule for the afternoon (which looks fascinating, by the way)  take a look at this.  And to purchase tickets click here.


Jacqueline Wright Joins Mentoring Scheme

10 Nov

© Film Directing For Women

Jacqueline Wright has been confirmed as one of 2014’s mentors for WFTV.

You’ll recall that Jacqueline graced our pages on a monthly basis in 2010 thanks to her collaboration with Alice Lowe on the awesome Jackal Films. WFTV is Women in Film & TV and is the leading membership organisation for women working in creative media in the UK.

Their Mentoring Scheme is designed for women who have more than 5 years experience working in TV, film or digital production. Over six months, selected participants receive six hours of contact with their mentor, combined with a programme of seminars, training workshops and networking opportunities. Sounds impressive, although sadly places for the January – June 2014 mentoring scheme have closed.

To see the company that Jacqueline will be keeping click here for the full list of 2014 mentors. To read more about what WFTV do take a look at this.



15 Sep

It’s been some time since we heard from Jacqueline Wright – the director of Lifespam and one half of Jackal Films – but now TVO is proud to present her latest work, in the form of short film Mute. 

The piece is based upon the short story by legendary horror writer Stephen King (as featured in his 2008 anthology, Just After Sunset), and stars acclaimed theatre and television actor Patrick Ryecart as a middle aged man with a troubled past, who picks up an unusual hitch-hiker.

Typically visual, the film relies heavily on Ryecart’s magnificent performance, and as with much of Wright’s best work, the director creates wonders with a limited budget to form a minimal classic.  You can see it in full below.

Wright, who is currently developing three comedy-horror film projects, has also recently created a couple of idents for this year’s Film4 Frightfest, which recently took place at the Empire Cinema in Leicester Square, and returns for it’s annual All Nighter event in London on October 26th, and various venues across the country (including Bristol, Glasgow, Newcastle and Sunderland on November 2nd).

These reminders that you’re not really in the best place to use a phone are a little bit NSFW, so we advise caution if you’re viewing them in the office, but the rest of you can enjoy a chuckle over on Jacqueline’s Vimeo channel now!

If you missed the wonder of Jackal Films glorious Calendar project, in which Wright and Alice Lowe made twelve shorts in one year, you can see them all again, plus various other noteworthy TVO shorts after them, via this handy playlist below.  Enjoy…

Alice’s Mini Masterclass

15 Mar

© Jackal Films

The lovely and talented Alice Lowe appears in a short BAFTA Masterclass to share what she and Jacqueline Wright learned from their year-long one-short-a-month project they embarked on in 2010.

During the Mini Masterclass which was recorded at BAFTA 195 Piccadilly on 5 January 2013, Alice talks about how she was nervous about making films, as it seemed like a completely different world to television and live shows, and why they decided to put the films on the internet instead of taking them to festivals.

You can see the whole interview here.

If you didn’t see the films from the project at the time, or want to see them again, you can go to the Jackal Films Website.

You could also read our interview with Alice and Jacqueline, which took place when they were half way through the year of the project.

EXCLUSIVE: In Holoserica Cepa – A Gift From The Velvet Onion

25 Dec

© The Velvet Onion

Yes, it’s Christmas time, and as another year draws to a close, The Velvet Onion has not one, but two presents for you.

Our annual TVO Calendar has sadly been delayed a little, but will be here for your perusal before 2012 runs out of gas.  We’ve been working round the clock the last few days to ensure it’s up to scratch, and reaches you before the end of the month, and we think you’ll love what we’ve come up with, so stay peeled over the festive season for that!

The other present… well that’s arguably more special.  We’ve called upon some of our more musical friends in the realm of the Onion, to provide a very special eight-track EP you can download completely free!

Just visit our Soundcloud page to get all eight tracks, featuring the likes of James Cook, Sue Denim, Antony Elvin, Stephen Evans, Suzy Evelyn-Hall, Rich Fulcher, Richard Glover, Shelley Longworth, Alice Lowe, Holly Jane Shears, Waen Shepherd, William Summers, Gareth Tunley, Michael Tyack and Tony Way.

But hurry, because the files will only be available until SUNDAY JANUARY 6th, before being taken down forever.  For a full tracklisting, and a flashy swanky player loaded with all eight songs, see below.

TVO would like to thank everyone involved with the making of these tracks, and the compiling of this collection.  You all know who you are, and to you, and everyone out there reading this – a most merry of holiday seasons to you all. We love ya.


01. Secret Wolf – GARY LE STRANGE

Taken from the long deleted third Gary Le Strange album, Beef Scarecrow, this song has only previously been made available at Waen Shepherd’s live shows many moons ago.  Stay tuned for the full reissue of his GLS albums over the next twelve months, with the first, Polaroid Suitcase available now.


Originally a spin-off from folk legends Circulus, the magnificent Princes In The Tower have become an almighty Tudor force in their own right.  This track is taken from the forthcoming debut album, A Golden Hour With Princes In The Tower, which will be available soon…

03. Midnight, The Stars And You – RICHARD GLOVER & STEPHEN EVANS

Described by Evans as a ‘short and daft’ version of the 1930s classic (forever immortalised in The Shining), this is a previously unreleased recording from the Splendid duo…

04. The Self Machine – JAMES COOK

Taken from James’ wonderful debut solo album, Arts And Sciences, this track sees the former Nemo frontman on typically fine form.  The album is available now.


05.  Song Of A Wayfarer – WILLIAM SUMMERS

Recorded live at St John the Divine Church in Richmond upon Thames back in July, this is an exclusive, haunting live recording from the multi-instrumentalist.


The first new DeadDogInBlackBag song for a long, long time, this is a complete and utter exclusive from the electropop duo.

07. Another Rainy Day – SUE DENIM

A 60s influenced b-side from Sue’s recent Bicycle single, this track acts a taster for her delightfully summery debut solo album, Sue And The Unicorn, which is available now.

08. This Christmastime [2012 Mix] – ANTONY ELVIN, ALICE LOWE & FRIENDS

Originally recorded for Alice LoweJacqueline Wright‘s Jackal Film of the same name back in 2010, this fresh mix from its producer and co-writer Antony Elvin features a host of TVO stars – Gareth Tunley, Shelley Longworth, Waen Shepherd, Tony Way and Rich Fulcher – spreading an important message for the festive season.

Vintage Sights: Top Ten Alice & Steve Moments On YouTube

30 Nov

Today marks the release of Sightseers into UK cinemas.  At long last, this brilliant film starring Alice Lowe, Steve Oram and Richard Glover can be shared by you all.  Directed by Ben Wheatley, we’ve gone bananas for it because it truly is brilliant and deserves your attention.  It opens in 92 cinemas nationwide, and it’s success this weekend will decide if it expands to further cinemas next week, so it’s crucial if you have a passing interest in the film, you go and see it now!

Of course, most of you will be more than aware of the work of Alice Lowe and Steve Oram before this film was released, but for those of you who are new to their genius, we thought we’d compile a handy list of easy-to-access clips from the Tube of You.  It’s been tough selecting only five each, but we think we’ve found you some absolute corkers.

© Eamonn McCormack/Getty Images Europe

© Eamonn McCormack/Getty Images Europe

All of these clips are either web-shorts, live clips or tv taster pilots which didn’t go to broadcast, which helped narrow the list down somewhat.  Obviously, they only scratch the surface of the great work the pair have been crafting for the past decade.  To truly experience their mastery, you simply must see them live at the earliest opportunity, and to find out when that next is, you’ll have to keep coming back here!  We’ll be keeping you posted on any appearances they make, so pop back every now and then to find out more.

If that’s too long a wait, you can browse their ‘videographies’, as it were, via our TVO webstores.  Both run by Amazon on our behalf, we have dedicated sections for every artist we feature in a UK and US store – and both will ship internationally too.  For Alice’s stuff, visit here for UK, and here for US – and if Steve’s your bag, visit here for UK, and here for US.

Now to the top ten! Continue reading

A Jackal Brew

1 Jun

© Jackal films

If any of you peelers are passing the Cube cinema in Bristol at the end of this fresh month of June, you’re in for a treat as there will be a screening of some Jackal shorts, accompanied by a chat with Alice Lowe and director Jacqueline Wright!

As many of you will know, Jackal Films have built up a large portfolio of comedy shorts after vowing to post a film online at the start of each month. Now, with many of these hilarious sketches under their belts, they’re a group with much knowledge to share on the subject of filming on a budget, working to a deadline and comedy writing.  They can answer questions on these and many other burning topics that aspiring auteurs or performers out there may have.

And speaking of knowledge – along with the Jackals, Hot Brew, who are Alice Lowe and Antony Elvin under the guises of earthy pair Una and Crispin, will also be performing and sharing with their audience a “special blend of folk muesli”.

This is a lucky treat for anyone who can attend – you can see all this on Saturday June 25th for just £7! For more information and to book your tickets, look no further than right here.

For anyone that can attend, we’d love to hear back as Bristol is just out of the Velveteers reach so report back to us peelers!

A thank you to Mr Hopkinson for pointing us in the direction of this event.  

Alice’s WunderFilms

21 Apr

© Jackal Films

Tonight on Radio 4, Alice Lowe invites you all to visit Alice’s Wunderland.

In light of this, Velveteer Mog elected to take a quick look back at the work of Alice & Jacqueline Wright’s Jackal Films throughout their 2010 Calendar Project.  Below is her personal review.

In 2010 comedy writer and performer Alice Lowe and director Jacqueline Wright released a film per month under the guise of  Jackal Films – that’s twelve shorts in total. Although we announced each of their monthly releases as they came out last year, we reckoned Jackal Film’s achievement was due a retrospective.

My original plan was to take notes while I watched each film, in an attempt to identify and record the most salient points about each one. “January: silly + brilliantly done” was as far as I got before I got utterly sucked in, forgetting to write anything else.  Luckily I may have nailed it in one statement: “silly + brilliantly done”  is a pretty accurate description of what Jackal Films is all about.

© Jackal Films

The silliness comes from Alice Lowe’s surreal, unhinged performances.  She inhabits each character completely and then pushes it as far as it can go. Then she pushes it some more, somehow still managing to avoid caricature. Thanks to the delicate nuances of each performance and Jacqueline Wright’s perfectly-pitched unintrusive direction, the characters Alice plays are bizarre and extreme, yet at the same time strangely credible.  In March’s film, The Birdhandler, Alice isn’t someone pretending to be a bird; she is a bird.

© Jackal Films

Women who look a certain way are expected to behave in a certain way on TV, and when they don’t it’s incredibly refreshing. There’s something inherently funny about an attractive woman (as Alice is) not taking herself seriously – by some way!  I’m not sure if Jackal Films will care for the comparison, but it’s arguably what defined the funniest moments on ‘Smack the Pony’. Simply put, watching women being silly, when they could easily get away with just being simpering or sexy, is terrific fun!  August’s Celeberama is a testament to that.

Continue reading

Learn From The Best At The LCWF!

4 Apr

© Bruno Vincent, Colin Hoult/Dawn Sedgewick Management, Jacqueline Wright, Mrs Popper, London Comedy Writers Festival

The London Comedy Writer’s Festival has announced the full schedule for the event next weekend, and at last we can confirm what involvement TVO’s favourites will have!

The main draw if you want to learn from our regulars will be Sunday’s schedule, which features a session with Alice Lowe and Jacqueline Wright entitled Shortcuts To Screenwriting.  This will allow the Jackal Films duo to share some of the secrets which got them through the grueling but rewarding Calendar project last year – in which they wrote, filmed and edited a short film every month with hilarious results.

Also on the Sunday is a very exciting opportunity indeed: a chance to take part in collaborative projects with a number of comics, including our very own Colin Hoult!  First is a session on Collaborating With Performers, and this is followed by a Topical Sketch Workshop: a practical session involving a chance to brainstorm ideas and write your own sketch, which will be performed at the end of the session.  For this, Colin will be joined by the talented Sarah Pascoe [Free Agents, The Thick Of It] and Max Dickins [Dregs].

To make this even more enticing – if promising material is created, the head of the London Festival Fringe, Greg Tallent, will be on hand to help develop and produce your work and possibly include it in a show for the London Fringe in July!

The TVO links don’t end there, either.  Saturday’s schedule will feature a talk from Jessica Hynes & Stephen Mangan sharing their comic writing and acting tips whilst Robert Popper will be teaching you what they don’t teach you at Comedy Writing School.

BBC Comedy director Natalie Bailey [Time Trumpet, Dick And Dom’s Funny Business, BBC Comedy Online] will be on hand to help explain how to write for the biggest possible audience, and one of the people responsible for getting The Mighty Boosh onto our tv screens in 2004, Lucy Lumsden is also on hand to discuss comedy drama alongside veteran producer Jon Plowman.  Lumsden is now Head of Comedy at Sky, which makes her responsible for the recent Little Crackers series and the comissioning of forthcoming cult sketch show This Is Jinsey which is set to feature Alice Lowe – so its fair to say she’s on our side when it comes to appreciating great comedy!

Finally, IT Crowd writer and script-editor Andrew Ellard is moderating a discussion with Red Dwarf co-creator Doug Naylor about the decisions facing writers looking to make a pilot of their concept – and when all of this is factored into the numerous other discussions, networking opportunities and practical workshops on offer, the LCWF is looking more exciting than ever!

You can see the full schedule on the LCWF website, which also lets you buy tickets for the festival.

As mentioned recently, the organizers of this incredible event have very kindly offered us a special ticket offer for any of our readers who fancy going along.

Tickets for the entire weekend usually cost £149, but TVO is able to offer you a £25discount, AND the LCWF team will very kindly donate £5 to Comic Relief for every ticket we sell!

To purchase tickets with our discount attached, visit their official website and enter the promotional code:


The festival promises to be a great event, and we’ll hopefully be bringing you further coverage of our TVO flavoured acts involved in the run-up to the weekend.  If any of our peelers take up this fantastic offer, please contact us as we’d love to hear from you!

For the full list of speakers, see this earlier peeling.

The London Comedy Writer’s Festival: TVO Tickets!

30 Mar

© Bruno Vincent, Colin Hoult/Dawn Sedgewick Management, Jacqueline Wright, Mrs Popper, London Comedy Writers Festival

It’s not too late to buy tickets to the London Comedy Writers Festival, which takes place between April 8th-10th and features lots of TVO favourites.

The Festival will gather some of the biggest names in British comedy under one roof, providing a perfect opportunity for budding writers to learn from the best, and this includes the likes of Alice Lowe, Jacqueline Wright, Colin Hoult, Jessica Hynes and Robert Popper to name but a few!

Also joining the star studded line-up are the likes of  Griff Rhys Jones, Stephen Mangan, Rhona Cameron, Paul Jackson, Jon Plowman and the creators of Red Dwarf, Rob Grant & Doug Naylor.  The producer of Booshniverse-graced comedies Time Trumpet and Dick And Dom’s Funny Business, Natalie Bailey; Horrible Histories writer Dave Cohen and IT Crowd writer Andrew Ellard, will also be on hand with invaluable tales of the business.






As mentioned recently, the organizers of this incredible event have very kindly offered us a special ticket offer for any of our readers who fancy going along.

Tickets for the entire weekend usually cost £149, but TVO is able to offer you a £25discount, AND the LCWF team will very kindly donate £5 to Comic Relief for every ticket we sell!

To purchase tickets with our discount attached, visit their official website and enter the promotional code:



The festival promises to be a great event, and we’ll hopefully be bringing you further coverage of our TVO flavoured acts involved in the run-up to the weekend.  If any of our peelers take up this fantastic offer, please contact us as we’d love to hear from you!

For the full list of speakers, see this earlier peeling.

The London Comedy Writers Festival

9 Mar

Colin Hoult and the team behind Jackal Films are amongst the big name speakers at the forthcoming London Comedy Writers Festival next month.

© Film Directing For Women

Taking place between April 8th & 10th at Regents College, the festival is set to gather some of the biggest names in British comedy under one roof and provide a perfect opportunity for budding writers to learn from the best, make some friends and business contacts and have fun learning more about their chosen craft.

Alice Lowe and Jacqueline Wright will be speaking at the event, as will TVO favourite Colin Hoult, and numerous other important movers and shakers in the world of comedy.  Other faces familiar to TVO readers will include regular Julia Davis collaborator {and Spaced co-creator} Jessica Hynes, friend of Jackal… Robert Popper (Look Around You, Friday Night Dinner), and legends of comedy Doug Naylor (Red Dwarf), Griff Rhys Jones, Jon Plowman (Spitting Image) and Paul Jackson (The Young Ones).  Natalie Bailey, the producer of Dick And Dom’s Funny Business, which has recently featured a number of TVO faces will also be on hand amongst the ever growing list of creative types – so if comedy writing is your game, this is an event not to be missed.

Tickets are available now priced £149, and the British Comedy Guide is offering a £25 discount for a limited time via their own website.

This Christmastime

30 Dec

© Jackal Films

An all-star cast has assembled to provide the final Jackal Film of 2010.

Mooted to be a long-lost Christmas single from 1983, the short, directed as ever by Jacqueline Wright, sees the return of Alice Lowe‘s Toyah-parody Val Hallah, alongside Waen Shepherd‘s very own Gary Le Strange.

They are joined by the mighty Rich Fulcher, the sumptuous Antony Elvin, the glorious Tony Paul Way and the wonderful Gareth Tunley who together voice an important message we all need to remember during the festive season.


2 Dec

A brand new Jackal Film has appeared online, and its more than worth the wait.

Featuring Alice Lowe and Richard Glover, it sees the team of Alice & Jacqueline Wright branch out into animation, with ridiculously silly results.  It’s an existential look into JackalWorld, and we’ll say no more, in case we spoil it… just watch and see for yourselves!

If you’d like to know more, check out Alice’s JackalFilms production blog over on their official page yonder.

See The Jackal

9 Nov

© Jackal Films

Two new opportunities to attend public screenings of the Jackal Films project have been announced.

The first takes place on Saturday, November 20th at the UnderWire Festival between 5pm & 8pm. The event, which is in aid of Amnesty International, is at The Human Rights Action Centre at New Inn Yard in Shoreditch, London.  Tickets are just £5, and with the promise of a ‘special guest’ accompanying Alice Lowe and Jacqueline Wright, it promises to be an interesting evening. Tickets are available here.

The second event will be part of Robin & Partridge’s Secret Comedy Club on Thursday, December 16th – which follows on from previous events (including one featuring Hot Brew) in that it will be fronted by comics Robin Clyfan & Charlie Partridge, and feature a madcap mixture of live comedy, music and short films at a secret location in Clerkenwell.  For more information, visit the event’s Facebook page.

If you can’t make it to either event, don’t forget you can view all of the films – featuring some of the cream of Booshdom – over on the Jackal Films website here.


31 Oct

© Jackal Films

The latest Jackal Film from Alice Lowe and Jacqueline Wright is now online.

No month is complete without a short from the duo, and their latest, Bretheren, is a Halloween special co-starring Sharon Horgan [Pulling, Monkey Dust and the voice of Lifespam!] and Steven Evans [Nighty NightHyperdrive and frequent collaborator of Colin Hoult].  In it, a flame haired Alice is warned of the dangers she’ll face if she keeps killing wasps, with suitably weird consequences.

It’s clear all involved had fun making this one – and what better way to start your Halloween festivities than with a slice of comic-horror from one of the Darkplace team? You can view Bretheren below, and see previous Jackal Films on their YouTube Channel and website.

My Old Baby

30 Sep

© Jackal Films

The latest Jackal Film from Alice Lowe and Jacqueline Wright is now online.  Normally, at this point, we’d give you a bit of analysis – but today we need to say just five words:

New Lifespam featuring Rich Fulcher.

Also featuring the wonderful Sarah Kendall of Beehive fame, you can see the latest in the year-long project below.

Once you’ve gotten over the magnificence of that – you can check out previous Jackal Films (including the tv pilot of Lifespam) on their YouTube channel – and read our review of last month’s Jackal Films Screening over yonder.


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