The Thick of It's winning trio

Image caption,
The dark-edged satirical show has won a legion of fans

Satirical comedy The Thick of It emerged as the main winner at Sunday night's Bafta TV Awards, with three trophies.

The show, originally created by Armando Ianucci, took best sitcom, while stars Peter Capaldi and Rebecca Front triumphed in the newly-created categories of best male and best female comedy performance.

Until now, the comedy's only Bafta award came for its original star Chris Langham - for best comedy performance - in 2006. Capaldi was nominated for that same award and was nominated again in 2008.

Here we take a look at the careers of Ianucci, Capaldi and Front leading up to their success at the Baftas.


Image caption,
Armando Iannucci helped create Alan Partridge

The 46-year-old writer and performer was born to an Italian father and Scottish mother in Glasgow, and has gone on to become one of the most influential figures in British comedy.

He began his career working on youth shows for BBC Radio Scotland in the late 1980s, and soon gravitated to London where one of his first productions for Radio 4 was On The Hour.

Among the talent he assembled was Steve Coogan, Chris Morris and Rebecca Front, who went on to star in The Thick of It.

The show translated to the small screen as TV news spoof The Day Today, which created its own headlines.

Ianucci also helped to bring Coogan's hapless creation Alan Partridge to the screen, before turning his attention to the New Labour political establishment in The Thick of It.

The sitcom is penned by five writers led by Ianucci - including a former Labour researcher - and charts the daily tribulations of civil servants and spin doctors working at the heart of government.

The Scotsman is also responsible for directing the show.

A film spin-off, In The Loop, took Iannucci to Hollywood for the first time when it picked up an Oscar nomination.

But it was the original TV series that has brought in the awards, adding to Ianucci's previous Bafta honours for Alan Partridge.


Image caption,
Capaldi's work as a director has been honoured

The 52-year-old Glaswegian has made the role of Malcolm Tucker his own, and since the departure of Chris Langham has become the star of the show.

He plays the abrasiive and much-feared government director of communications, loosely based on Tony Blair's former chief spin doctor Alistair Campbell.

Tucker's foul-mouthed tirades and capacity to do anything to get his own way have become the stuff of comedy legend - performances which have now been recognised by Bafta.

Capaldi's talents as an actor have, to date, gone largely unrecognised at major awards ceremonies, while his work as a director has taken him all the way to the Academy Awards.

His live action short film, It's a Wonderful Life, won an Oscar in 1995 and Capaldi's only other Bafta before Sunday night's triumph.

Like Ianucci, Capaldi is a Scotsman with Italian heritage, and has appeared in a wealth of TV dramas and feature films since his screen debut in 1982.

His more leftfield roles have included playing a transvestite called Vera Reynolds in Prime Suspect 3, and a parent in teen drama Skins.

Capaldi returned to the director's chair in 2009 for BBC Four comedy drama Getting On, starring Jo Brand as a geriatric nurse, which was also nominated at the TV Baftas.


Image caption,
Front has appeared as a panellist on Have I Got News For You

The 44-year-old actress plays hapless MP Nicola Murray, who has been given ministerial responsibility but is inexperienced and not up to the job.

She regularly incurs the wrath of Tucker, who is hell bent on making her place her child in comprehensive education for the good of the government's image.

Front began treading the boards as a student in Oxford, and made a foray into children's television before joining the cast of Iannucci's radio satire On The Hour.

She became a regular on its TV equivalent The Day Today and Knowing Me, Knowing You... With Alan Partridge, filling a variety of comic roles.

Her later work included playing Jill in dark BBC sitcom Nighty Night with its mind-bending plot, and sketch show Big Train.

As well as appearing on topical panel shows including Radio 4's The News Quiz and Have I Got News For You, Front is also a dramatic actress.

Since 2007, she has appeared as a police superintendent in ITV crime series Lewis.

Her Bafta for The Thick of It is the performer's first major award.

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