Broadcaster and comedian Sue Perkins will take the lead role in a self-penned new comedy, Heading Out, for BBC Two, commissioned by Kristian Smith, Executive Editor, Comedy Commissioning.
The 6x30-minute series, written by Perkins, is a co-production between RED Production Company and new indie, Square Peg TV, Perkins’ own production company with Debi Allen.
Perkins plays Sara – a veterinarian so skilled she can spay a tortoise one-handed. She’s successful, she’s popular – there’s just one chink in her armour – she’s too scared to tell her parents she’s gay. On the evening of her 40th birthday, Sara’s friends give her an ultimatum: either she tells her parents when they come to visit in six weeks’ time, or they will. To help Sara achieve this goal, they’ve saved up to buy a series of sessions with Toria, the eccentric and mildly-qualified lifestyle coach / therapist, and so the countdown begins.
Heading Out starts production in September and is due to be broadcast next year on BBC Two. The series is produced by Jim Poyser and directed by Natalie Bailey. Nicola Shindler is executive producing for RED Production Company with Debi Allen executive producer for Square Peg TV. The executive producer for the BBC is Kristian Smith.
Nicola Shindler said: “Having known Sue for a number of years, I am familiar with her superb writing ability and natural comedic timing and I have always wanted us to work together. In Heading Out she has written a fantastically original, smart and witty script with engaging characters and pithy dialogue so I am eager for us to get cracking on such an exciting project.”
Sue Perkins said: “I think once the gnawing terror, sleepless nights and relentless self-doubt has subsided, this might well be the thing that I’m most proud of. It’s been a joy to work on, and I hope that joy proves to be infectious.”
Kristian Smith said: “Heading Out is a warm, intelligent and brilliantly funny sitcom. Sue is a fantastic writer, and we're thrilled to have it on BBC Two next year. Audiences can expect a super-sized, well-baked comedy from one of our very finest.”
Perkins is perhaps best known for presenting runaway hit shows like The Great British Bake-Off (BBC Two) with Mel Giedroyc and The Supersizers... series with Giles Coren. She is also a Radio 4 regular on The News Quiz and Just A Minute. However, she also has established writing credentials, which include many sketch and stand up shows at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and contributions to French And Saunders and Absolutely Fabulous.
I think once the gnawing terror, sleepless nights and relentless self-doubt has subsided, this might well be the thing that I’m most proud of. It’s been a joy to work on, and I hope that joy proves to be infectious.”