Apple's first BBC comedy production is 'Alabama' starring Imelda Staunton

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in iPod + iTunes + AppleTV
Apple and the BBC are working on their first comedy co-production, a show starring Imelda Staunton, probably best known to Americans as Dolores Umbridge in the "Harry Potter" movies.

Imelda Staunton as Dolores Umbridge.
Imelda Staunton as Dolores Umbridge.


The show, tentatively called "Alabama," is an eight-part series also featuring Darren Boyd and Phil Davis, Chortle said. Production is already underway, with director Jim O'Hanlon, writer Andy Wolton, and producer Chris Sussman, the comedy chief at BBC Studios.

The series will premiere on Apple TV+, but only sometime in 2020, Chortle noted.

That could make it one of the first confirmed "second-wave" Apple TV+ shows. The first wave should include projects from names like Steven Spielberg, J.J. Abrams, Oprah Winfrey, and Ron Moore.

Another BBC co-production is "Prehistoric Planet," a documentary series produced by BBC Studios' Natural History Unit with the help of Jon Favreau and "Planet Earth II" producer Mike Gunton. That show will depict Earth as it was 66 million years ago, shortly before dinosaurs went extinct.

Apple will likely reveal plans, pricing, and more concrete programming at a fall press event.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 23
    Apart from Imelda Staunton, US audiences will have never heard of the other two actors mentioned above.
    Hardly a recepie for success is it?
    Where is the US Star? (or Starlet?)
    Are the three brits going to play baddies?
    {Yes I know that I'm stereotyping}

    This may play well here in the UK (if it is shown on BBC and not on some Pay-per-View channel) but unless the script is top notch it may well struggle.

    Only time will tell eh?
  • Reply 2 of 23
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 8,298member
    Apart from Imelda Staunton, US audiences will have never heard of the other two actors mentioned above.
    Hardly a recepie for success is it?
    Where is the US Star? (or Starlet?)
    Are the three brits going to play baddies?
    {Yes I know that I'm stereotyping}

    This may play well here in the UK (if it is shown on BBC and not on some Pay-per-View channel) but unless the script is top notch it may well struggle.

    Only time will tell eh?
    So, it’s not out yet, and no one’s seen it or read it, but you’re....concerned? 
    gutengelronnleavingthebiggpscooter63Flytraplolliverfastasleep
  • Reply 3 of 23
    So, it’s not out yet, and no one’s seen it or read it, but you’re....concerned? 
    It is notoriously difficult to make a TV Comedy series that appeals to both UK and US audiences that isn't pretty bland and safe.
    Much British Comedy does not travel well especially to the USA (eg Last of the Summer Wine). Granted, shows like 'Friends' and '30 Rock' were/are pretty popular here but they are pretty safe shows.

    Playing safe maybe what Apple has in mind for this. To me that is a shame especially if the script is half decent.

  • Reply 4 of 23
    AppleExposedAppleExposed Posts: 1,398unconfirmed, member
    Just a few minutes ago I was thinking to myself...
    Wouldn't Apples service use the most expensive 4K cameras? Apple can afford it.

    Believe it or not a lot of "4K" content isn't actually filmed in 4K. This requires newer digital cameras. I hope Apple TV+ will be the first service to offer full 4k/Dolby Vision content on every show and movie. Wouldn't THAT would be great!
    Flytraplolliver
  • Reply 5 of 23
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 7,164member
    Apart from Imelda Staunton, US audiences will have never heard of the other two actors mentioned above.
    Hardly a recepie for success is it?
    Where is the US Star? (or Starlet?)
    Are the three brits going to play baddies?
    {Yes I know that I'm stereotyping}

    This may play well here in the UK (if it is shown on BBC and not on some Pay-per-View channel) but unless the script is top notch it may well struggle.

    Only time will tell eh?
    I’m kinda tired of all the declarations, yours included, of failure being made about Apple’s entry into this market. There has been a nonstop deluge of hateful and negative opinions about what Apple intends to do in these forums any time the subject arises. All I can do is remind you of the same predictions of abject failure for every product or service Apple has ever put forth that turned into resounding successes. Why can’t we just sit back and see what happens instead of trashing it and dooming it to failure without even giving it a chance?
    ronngutengelleavingthebiggpscooter63FlytraptmayStrangeDaysRayz2016lolliver
  • Reply 6 of 23
    elijahgelijahg Posts: 989member
    lkrupp said:
    Apart from Imelda Staunton, US audiences will have never heard of the other two actors mentioned above.
    Hardly a recepie for success is it?
    Where is the US Star? (or Starlet?)
    Are the three brits going to play baddies?
    {Yes I know that I'm stereotyping}

    This may play well here in the UK (if it is shown on BBC and not on some Pay-per-View channel) but unless the script is top notch it may well struggle.

    Only time will tell eh?
    I’m kinda tired of all the declarations, yours included, of failure being made about Apple’s entry into this market. There has been a nonstop deluge of hateful and negative opinions about what Apple intends to do in these forums any time the subject arises. All I can do is remind you of the same predictions of abject failure for every product or service Apple has ever put forth that turned into resounding successes. Why can’t we just sit back and see what happens instead of trashing it and dooming it to failure without even giving it a chance?
    Ping? HomePod? Siri?
    AppleExposedlkrupp
  • Reply 7 of 23
    AppleExposedAppleExposed Posts: 1,398unconfirmed, member
    elijahg said:
    lkrupp said:
    Apart from Imelda Staunton, US audiences will have never heard of the other two actors mentioned above.
    Hardly a recepie for success is it?
    Where is the US Star? (or Starlet?)
    Are the three brits going to play baddies?
    {Yes I know that I'm stereotyping}

    This may play well here in the UK (if it is shown on BBC and not on some Pay-per-View channel) but unless the script is top notch it may well struggle.

    Only time will tell eh?
    I’m kinda tired of all the declarations, yours included, of failure being made about Apple’s entry into this market. There has been a nonstop deluge of hateful and negative opinions about what Apple intends to do in these forums any time the subject arises. All I can do is remind you of the same predictions of abject failure for every product or service Apple has ever put forth that turned into resounding successes. Why can’t we just sit back and see what happens instead of trashing it and dooming it to failure without even giving it a chance?
    Ping? HomePod? Siri?

    Ping = Cancelled. You're right. Should have worked outside of iTunes and been more personal to the user.

    HomePod = Easily a billion dollar business and (for some damn reason) compared to Echo and Google crap which range from FREE-$20.
    Oh that's right it's placed in that category so Apple looks like they're losing.

    Siri = Are you fu**ing kidding me? This is one of the greatest innovations in human history.
    ronngutengelleavingthebiggpscooter63FlytraptmayStrangeDayslolliver
  • Reply 8 of 23
    elijahg said:
    lkrupp said:
    Apart from Imelda Staunton, US audiences will have never heard of the other two actors mentioned above.
    Hardly a recepie for success is it?
    Where is the US Star? (or Starlet?)
    Are the three brits going to play baddies?
    {Yes I know that I'm stereotyping}

    This may play well here in the UK (if it is shown on BBC and not on some Pay-per-View channel) but unless the script is top notch it may well struggle.

    Only time will tell eh?
    I’m kinda tired of all the declarations, yours included, of failure being made about Apple’s entry into this market. There has been a nonstop deluge of hateful and negative opinions about what Apple intends to do in these forums any time the subject arises. All I can do is remind you of the same predictions of abject failure for every product or service Apple has ever put forth that turned into resounding successes. Why can’t we just sit back and see what happens instead of trashing it and dooming it to failure without even giving it a chance?
    Ping? HomePod? Siri?
    Ping, yes. It clearly was not a success. HomePod? Too soon to tell (and we’re still in the first generation). Siri is getting steadily better and is already quite good (I use it every day a maybe switching to the Irish voice will improve for you!). So, one out of three from your list qualifies as a definite ‘failure’. The fate of the others remains open, it would seem.
    lolliver
  • Reply 9 of 23
    MacProMacPro Posts: 18,359member
    But ... but ... I hate her already for how she treated poor Harry!
    cornchiptenthousandthingslolliver
  • Reply 10 of 23
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 7,164member
    elijahg said:
    lkrupp said:
    Apart from Imelda Staunton, US audiences will have never heard of the other two actors mentioned above.
    Hardly a recepie for success is it?
    Where is the US Star? (or Starlet?)
    Are the three brits going to play baddies?
    {Yes I know that I'm stereotyping}

    This may play well here in the UK (if it is shown on BBC and not on some Pay-per-View channel) but unless the script is top notch it may well struggle.

    Only time will tell eh?
    I’m kinda tired of all the declarations, yours included, of failure being made about Apple’s entry into this market. There has been a nonstop deluge of hateful and negative opinions about what Apple intends to do in these forums any time the subject arises. All I can do is remind you of the same predictions of abject failure for every product or service Apple has ever put forth that turned into resounding successes. Why can’t we just sit back and see what happens instead of trashing it and dooming it to failure without even giving it a chance?
    Ping? HomePod? Siri?
    You make my point perfectly. Concentrate on the negative, be negative, espouse negativity, declare it all a failure. What a way to live your life. Which attitude do you think works better? To be negative and dismissive or to be positive and always move forward? I’ll tell you how Apple operates. Apple is a positive thinker, always moving forward, never looking backwards, always learning, always trying something new. If Apple listened to the negative and depressed likes of many who post here they wouldn’t be where they are today. 
    edited July 12 cornchipAppleExposedlolliver
  • Reply 11 of 23
    So, it’s not out yet, and no one’s seen it or read it, but you’re....concerned? 
    It is notoriously difficult to make a TV Comedy series that appeals to both UK and US audiences that isn't pretty bland and safe.
    Much British Comedy does not travel well especially to the USA (eg Last of the Summer Wine). Granted, shows like 'Friends' and '30 Rock' were/are pretty popular here but they are pretty safe shows.

    Playing safe maybe what Apple has in mind for this. To me that is a shame especially if the script is half decent.

    Are you kidding?! Monty Python, Red Dwarf, Mr Bean, Benny Hill, Fawlty Towers, Keeping Up Appearances, AbFab, The Office, The IT Crowd. Love’em here on the States side. Couldn’t imagine my life without those shows. 
    edited July 12 mknelsonpscooter63tmayStrangeDayslolliver
  • Reply 12 of 23
    cornchipcornchip Posts: 1,365member
    n2itivguy said:
    So, it’s not out yet, and no one’s seen it or read it, but you’re....concerned? 
    It is notoriously difficult to make a TV Comedy series that appeals to both UK and US audiences that isn't pretty bland and safe.
    Much British Comedy does not travel well especially to the USA (eg Last of the Summer Wine). Granted, shows like 'Friends' and '30 Rock' were/are pretty popular here but they are pretty safe shows.

    Playing safe maybe what Apple has in mind for this. To me that is a shame especially if the script is half decent.

    Are you kidding?! Monty Python, Red Dwarf, Mr Bean, Benny Hill, Fawlty Towers, Keeping Up Appearances, AbFab, The Office, The IT Crowd. Love’em here on the States side. Couldn’t imagine my life without those shows. 
    Mighty Boosh...
    lolliver
  • Reply 13 of 23
    mknelsonmknelson Posts: 362member
    cornchip said:
    n2itivguy said:Are you kidding?! Monty Python, Red Dwarf, Mr Bean, Benny Hill, Fawlty Towers, Keeping Up Appearances, AbFab, The Office, The IT Crowd. Love’em here on the States side. Couldn’t imagine my life without those shows. 
    Mighty Boosh...
    Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy…
    'Allo 'Allo
    Dr Who

    Plus all the shows grandma watched on PBS
    edited July 12 StrangeDayslolliver
  • Reply 14 of 23
    seanjseanj Posts: 64member
    So, it’s not out yet, and no one’s seen it or read it, but you’re....concerned? 
    It is notoriously difficult to make a TV Comedy series that appeals to both UK and US audiences that isn't pretty bland and safe.
    Much British Comedy does not travel well especially to the USA (eg Last of the Summer Wine).

    “Last of the Summer Wine” wasn’t a comedy, it was just an example of how unimaginative and out of touch BBC programmers were in the 80’s. Formulaic comedy shows making fun of the working class, how the over paid executives at the Beeb must have chortled over their gin & tonics...
  • Reply 15 of 23
    NotsofastNotsofast Posts: 409member
    Apart from Imelda Staunton, US audiences will have never heard of the other two actors mentioned above.
    Hardly a recepie for success is it?
    Where is the US Star? (or Starlet?)
    Are the three brits going to play baddies?
    {Yes I know that I'm stereotyping}

    This may play well here in the UK (if it is shown on BBC and not on some Pay-per-View channel) but unless the script is top notch it may well struggle.

    Only time will tell eh?
    That's not how audiences are built.   First, the BBC brand itself is very popular in the US, but more importantly, it's the advertising and other promotions that play a major role in most successful shows as there aren't enough blockbuster stars that everyone knows to go around.  Most of the most successful shows in America have been populated primarily with actors who weren't well known to most of the American audience at the time,  and certainly weren't stars, e.g., Breaking Bad, the Office, Seinfeld, etc.
    lolliver
  • Reply 16 of 23
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 8,298member
    elijahg said:
    lkrupp said:
    Apart from Imelda Staunton, US audiences will have never heard of the other two actors mentioned above.
    Hardly a recepie for success is it?
    Where is the US Star? (or Starlet?)
    Are the three brits going to play baddies?
    {Yes I know that I'm stereotyping}

    This may play well here in the UK (if it is shown on BBC and not on some Pay-per-View channel) but unless the script is top notch it may well struggle.

    Only time will tell eh?
    I’m kinda tired of all the declarations, yours included, of failure being made about Apple’s entry into this market. There has been a nonstop deluge of hateful and negative opinions about what Apple intends to do in these forums any time the subject arises. All I can do is remind you of the same predictions of abject failure for every product or service Apple has ever put forth that turned into resounding successes. Why can’t we just sit back and see what happens instead of trashing it and dooming it to failure without even giving it a chance?
    Ping? HomePod? Siri?
    HomePod is excellent. I quickly bought another. Siri is just as useful as any other pretend AI. 
    razorpitlolliver
  • Reply 17 of 23
    MacProMacPro Posts: 18,359member
    n2itivguy said:
    So, it’s not out yet, and no one’s seen it or read it, but you’re....concerned? 
    It is notoriously difficult to make a TV Comedy series that appeals to both UK and US audiences that isn't pretty bland and safe.
    Much British Comedy does not travel well especially to the USA (eg Last of the Summer Wine). Granted, shows like 'Friends' and '30 Rock' were/are pretty popular here but they are pretty safe shows.

    Playing safe maybe what Apple has in mind for this. To me that is a shame especially if the script is half decent.

    Are you kidding?! Monty Python, Red Dwarf, Mr Bean, Benny Hill, Fawlty Towers, Keeping Up Appearances, AbFab, The Office, The IT Crowd. Love’em here on the States side. Couldn’t imagine my life without those shows. 
    Not to mention one of the USA's most beloved comedies in the old days All in the Family was a 100% remake of a British show called Till Death Do Us Part, right down to the last detail. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/All_in_the_Family
    lolliver
  • Reply 18 of 23
    vmarksvmarks Posts: 720editor
    So, it’s not out yet, and no one’s seen it or read it, but you’re....concerned? 
    It is notoriously difficult to make a TV Comedy series that appeals to both UK and US audiences that isn't pretty bland and safe.
    Much British Comedy does not travel well especially to the USA (eg Last of the Summer Wine). Granted, shows like 'Friends' and '30 Rock' were/are pretty popular here but they are pretty safe shows.

    Playing safe maybe what Apple has in mind for this. To me that is a shame especially if the script is half decent.

    Fleabag has done quite well for Amazon Prime in the US, as has Catastrophe, and Good Omens. Good things find an audience that wasn't possible before. 
    lolliver
  • Reply 19 of 23
    razorpitrazorpit Posts: 960member
    elijahg said:
    lkrupp said:
    Apart from Imelda Staunton, US audiences will have never heard of the other two actors mentioned above.
    Hardly a recepie for success is it?
    Where is the US Star? (or Starlet?)
    Are the three brits going to play baddies?
    {Yes I know that I'm stereotyping}

    This may play well here in the UK (if it is shown on BBC and not on some Pay-per-View channel) but unless the script is top notch it may well struggle.

    Only time will tell eh?
    I’m kinda tired of all the declarations, yours included, of failure being made about Apple’s entry into this market. There has been a nonstop deluge of hateful and negative opinions about what Apple intends to do in these forums any time the subject arises. All I can do is remind you of the same predictions of abject failure for every product or service Apple has ever put forth that turned into resounding successes. Why can’t we just sit back and see what happens instead of trashing it and dooming it to failure without even giving it a chance?
    Ping? HomePod? Siri?
    HomePod is excellent. I quickly bought another. Siri is just as useful as any other pretend AI. 
    Yep, having just spent a week with the in-laws listening to them yell “hey google” and “ok google” three or four times per request for EVERYTHING, makes me wonder how anyone can say with a straight face that that AI is better than Siri. At best case they’re identical. Real world experience, Siri is slightly better.
    lolliver
  • Reply 20 of 23
    BluntBlunt Posts: 224member
    I have a bad feeling about these Apple productions. They will be safe and about diversity and shit like that. To make good shows you need a more edgy approach. Pollitcal correctness is boring as hell.
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