Category: BBC THREE
BBC THREE will be the first UK channel to premiere its programmes on broadband when it streams the new series of hit comedy The Mighty Boosh from 19 July 2005 - a week ahead of its transmission on 26 July.
The Mighty Boosh is the first of a number of original and award-winning BBC THREE comedies that will be premiered via broadband in the coming months.
Audiences will be able to watch streamed programmes when they want on bbc.co.uk/bbcthree and catch up if they've missed an episode.
All episodes will be available to view for up to seven days after the final programme of the series transmits on BBC THREE.
The service further enhances BBC THREE's growing reputation as an innovative and mature digital brand, as the channel seeks to exploit cross-platform opportunities to offer viewers more control and greater access to its programmes.
Jana Bennett, BBC Director of Television, says: "The broadband premiere of The Mighty Boosh is a significant step forward in offering our audiences even greater value in a changing television world.
"It is one of a number of pilots that BBC Television will be undertaking over the next few months, exploiting the opportunities that new technologies offer to look at how programmes might be delivered beyond the traditional linear broadcast."
Produced by Steve Coogan and Henry Normal's Baby Cow Productions, The Mighty Boosh sees the return of intrepid heroes Vince Noir (Noel Fielding) and Howard Moon (Julian Barratt) as they embark on a string of brand new adventures.
The first series, shown last year on BBC THREE and subsequently on BBC TWO, was nominated for Best Comedy Newcomer at the 2004 British Comedy Awards.
The broadband premiere of The Mighty Boosh follows BBC THREE's pioneering Sunday night Best of Three Multiscreen trial which was launched in May and continues for six months.
From 9.00pm on Sunday nights, digital satellite viewers are prompted to press the red button and are offered the choice of three of their favourite BBC THREE programmes, in addition to the channel's live transmission.
Stuart Murphy, Controller of BBC Three, says: "It's a natural progression for us to make our programmes available on broadband - it's the next step after the Best of Three Multiscreen trial - more and more homes are getting connected as there are now over six million broadband subscribers in the UK.
"Crucially, it can deliver a television experience whenever people want it."
Notes to Editors
According to Ofcom (January 2005), six million households in the UK have broadband connections.
Recent financial statements from BT and NTL place the market size at over six million (five million for BT and one million for NTL), which rises to over seven million homes when including Wanadoo, AOL, Tiscali and other providers (around half of all internet connections).
Currently, there is a new broadband connection every 10 seconds.
In May 2005 15.1 million people aged 15+ claimed to have a broadband connection at home, up 222% on the same time last year (BMRB).
BBC THREE recently won Broadcast Magazine's Digital Channel of the Year Award for Best General Entertainment Channel.
A survey of 3,000 adults by the BBC showed that, in the first three months of 2005, BBC THREE was the best channel for alternative British comedy.
Baby Cow is one of the UK's leading independent production companies whose multi-award-winning shows include Nighty Night (which returns to BBC THREE for a new series later this year), Ideal (which returns for a new series on BBC THREE next year), I am Not An Animal, Monkey Trousers, The Keith Barrett Show, Marion And Geoff and Human Remains.