Sky 1 launches new schedule

British pay TV broadcaster Sky 1 has unveiled its autumn line up, which includes a raft of new comedies, dramas and factual entertainment series.

This follows the broadcaster’s commitment to increase the amount of original British programming it invests in by 50% in the next year to reach £600 million (US$976 million) by 2014.

It has ordered two new comedies; Gates, which is produced by Feelgood Fiction Productions and stars The Royle Family’s Sue Johnston and Gavin & Stacey’s Joanna Page and 8x1hr Starlings, which is produced by Baby Cow Productions and follows a working class family in Derbyshire.

Meanwhile, it has also commissioned factual entertainment series Meet The Pranksters, a 28x30mins series produced by Gallowgate Productions, and 8x1hour talent show Last Act Standing, which is produced by Magnum Media.

Other series on its autumn schedule include Strike Back: Project Dawn, a coproduction between Sky and HBO/Cinemax based on the novels by Chris Ryan, Treasure Island starring Eddie Izzard and Elijah Wood, a second series of Ricky Gervais’ An Idiot Abroad, Ashley Banjo’s Secret Street Crew, Safebreakers, The Glee Project and a third season of Got To Dance.

US imports on its schedule include Fox’s Steven Spielberg-produced dinosaur drama Terra Nova, Glee, which it wrested from Channel Four, and new seasons of Hawaii Five-0, The Middle, Raising Hope and Modern Family.