British Comedy Awards

British Comedy Awards

British Comedy Awards 2006 Logo
Awarded for Most popular in Comedy
Location London Palladium (1990)
The London Studios (1991-2009)
indigO2 (2010)
Fountain Studios (2011-14, 16-)
Country United Kingdom
Presented by Michael Parkinson (1990)
Jonathan Ross (1991–2007, 2009–14, 16-)
Angus Deayton (2008)
First awarded 1990
Official website

The British Comedy Awards are an annual awards ceremony in the United Kingdom celebrating notable comedians and entertainment performances of the previous year.

The 2015 Awards were cancelled after failing to find a broadcast partner after Channel 4 dropped the event. A new broadcast partner is being lined up for 2016.


The awards were shown live on ITV in December from 1990 to 2006, after which the broadcast of the British Comedy Awards 2007 was suspended by ITV due to allegations of irregularities and deception in the awarding of the 2005 People's Choice Award and then ongoing related investigations about the 2007 British television phone-in scandal resulting in Ofcom's subsequently fining ITV a record £5.675 million for its misuse of premium-rate telephone lines.[1][2][3]

After Michael Parkinson presented the inaugural ceremony at the London Palladium in December 1990, subsequent shows have been presented by Jonathan Ross, staged at London Studios, and produced by Michael Hurll Television (MHTV), whose parent company is Unique Communications Group.[1][4][5][6] Jonathan Ross announced that he would not be presenting the 2008 awards, in light of The Russell Brand Show prank telephone calls row[7] and was replaced by Angus Deayton.

The 2007 show occurred on 6 December 2007, but was not televised due to the 2005 controversy and subsequent investigations.[8] The following years ceremony was shown live on 6 December 2008.[4] Compliance for the show was the responsibility of the ITV Compliance Unit of ITV Network Limited (consisting of members from ITV plc, STV Group, UTV Media, and Channel Television Ltd).[9][10][11]

In June 2010, it was announced that awards were to be broadcast on Channel 4 for three years, which was later extended for one more year. Shortly afterwards, the 2010 ceremony was postponed until the 2010 ceremony finally aired in January 2011. In June 2015 Channel 4 announced they would be dropping the ceremony.[12] The 2015 ceremony was subsequently cancelled due to a lack of a suitable broadcast partner. A new broadcast partner is being lined up for the 2016 ceremony, honoring the best comedies produced in both 2015 and 2016.


Investigation of alleged irregularities and deception

At the 2005 British Comedy Awards show, the wrong show received the People's Choice Award.[13] The award was "mistakenly given" to Ant & Dec's Saturday Night Takeaway even though The Catherine Tate Show received the most tabulated votes and should have been declared the winner, and Anthony McPartlin and Declan Donnelly (Ant & Dec) were asked to return their 2005 award.[14]

Charged by the awards show with investigating the allegations of irregularities, the independent law firm Olswang summarized its findings as follows: "Robbie Williams was invited to present an award. It was understood that he would be happy [to do so] if the recipients were Anthony McPartlin and Declan Donnelly. In order to ensure his attendance, this assurance was given. But it could not be definitively established that Williams' involvement led to the wrong winner being announced" [italics added].[14]

Ant & Dec's Saturday Night Takeaway did however receive the People's Choice Award at the British Comedy Awards 2006.[15]

Phone-in scandal

Beginning on 26 July 2007, British tabloid newspapers reported the alleged involvement of the British Comedy Awards in the 2007 British television phone-in scandal.[2][8] According to a report in The Sun, viewers telephoned a premium-rate number to vote for the People's Choice Award at the 2005 Awards during what was claimed to be a live broadcast; yet, at 22:30, the show went to a news broadcast, so that when the show returned, and viewers thought it was still live and thus still phoned the number, the last half-hour was in fact a recording as the vote had already finished, rendering the call-in votes given during the recording pointless and a misuse of the callers' money.[2]

ITV announced that they postponed the British Comedy Awards 2007 due to the voting irregularities. In a statement, the company said: "Pending conclusion of the investigation, broadcast of the British Comedy Awards 2007 will be postponed. ... ITV will not make any further comment regarding this matter until the conclusion of the investigation."[16][17]

It was announced on 21 September 2007 that the British Comedy Awards 2007 would not be screened by ITV1; however, it was not confirmed then that the Awards would still take place in December, and it was not ruled out that they could be screened by another channel.[17] The 2007 awards did take place on 5 December 2007, but that show was not televised.[8] In early May 2008 Ofcom announced its fining and sanctioning ITV plc in a press release.[3]

On 15 August 2008, it was announced that a similar scandal could have been committed in the award ceremony at the 2004 Awards.[18]

Following The Russell Brand Show prank telephone calls row and his 12-week unpaid suspension from all of his BBC shows, Jonathan Ross resigned from presenting the 2008 awards, in agreement with ITV, as he did not want to "take away from the awards themselves or the many talented winners of the awards." Angus Deayton replaced Jonathan Ross as the host of the British Comedy Awards.[7] Ross returned to presenting the awards in 2009.


























The 2013 awards were presented at a two-hour ceremony hosted by Jonathan Ross on 12 December and shown live on Channel 4.[23][24][25]


See also


  1. 1 2 Ben Dowell (22 October 2007). "News: Media: Comedy Awards Firm Angry at ITV". Retrieved 2008-05-12.
  2. 1 2 3 Colin Robertson (26 July 2007). "ITV Scam Comedy Awards Vote". The Sun. Retrieved 2008-05-11.
  3. 1 2 3 OFCOM (8 May 2008). "Ofcom Fines ITV plc for Misconduct in Viewer Competitions and Voting". OFCOM press release. Archived from the original on 13 May 2008. Retrieved 2008-05-13.
  4. 1 2 "British Comedy Awards". 2008. Retrieved 2008-05-11.
  5. "Unique Media". Unique Communications Group. (About Us). 2008. Retrieved 2008-05-12.
  6. Tim Cooper (8 January 2007). "The Man Who Has Kept Britain Laughing for Half a Century". The Independent. Retrieved 2008-05-13. He started the British Comedy Awards and gave Cilla Black 'the bollocking of her life'. As Michael Hurll marks his half-century in broadcasting, he tells Tim Cooper the secrets of keeping stars sweet.
  7. 1 2 Tara Conlan (31 October 2008). "Jonathan Ross pulls out of hosting British Comedy Awards". The Guardian. Retrieved 2008-10-31.
  8. 1 2 3 4 Paul Revoir (6 December 2007). "Awards Uproar As Ross Makes Madeleine Joke and Fern Britton Calls Giant Bear 'Mohammed' ". Daily Mail. (Showbiz News). Retrieved 2008-05-12.
  9. ITV plc. "Responsible Programming". ITV plc. Archived from the original on 21 March 2006. Retrieved 2008-05-12.
  10. ITV plc. "Responsibility in the Programme Lifecycle: Broadcast". ITV plc. Retrieved 2008-05-12.
  11. ITV plc. "Responsibility in the Programme Lifecycle: Post Broadcast". ITV plc. Retrieved 2008-05-12.
  12. C4 drops British Comedy Awards
  13. "Past Winners: 2005". People's Choice Awards at the British Comedy Awards. (official site). 2005. Retrieved 2008-05-11.
  14. 1 2 3 4 "Ant and Dec Return Comedy Prize". BBC News. 8 May 2008. Retrieved 2008-05-11. Ant and Dec are reportedly appalled at the error over the prize [photo caption]. ... TV presenters Ant and Dec are to return a prize they were awarded at the 2005 British Comedy Awards after ITV revealed that they did not win. ... The Catherine Tate Show collected more votes for the People's Choice Awards, an independent report on the affair says. ... It is thought that presenter Robbie Williams had been given assurances that Ant and Dec were the winners. ... The deception emerged as media watchdog Ofcom fined ITV £5.68m over its use of premium rate phone lines. ... ITV gave details of the incident as part of a statement responding to the record fine.
  15. 1 2 "People's Choice Award 2006". British Comedy Awards 2006. 2006. Retrieved 2008-05-11.
  16. "ITV Axes British Comedy Awards". Sky News. 21 September 2007. Retrieved 2008-05-11. ITV is to drop the British Comedy Awards following the discovery of alleged phone vote irregularities in a previous show.
  17. 1 2 "ITV Drops British Comedy Awards". BBC News. 21 September 2007. Retrieved 2008-05-11. ITV will not screen this year's British Comedy Awards after reportedly finding irregularities with phone voting. ... The problem happened during the 2005 awards show, according to the broadcaster, which has called in law firm Olswang to investigate. ... ITV refused to give details and said it would not comment further until the investigation was concluded. ... But the ceremony is still set to go ahead in December and could be aired by another channel.
  18. Conlan, Tara (15 August 2008). "ITV company faces fine over a second British Comedy Awards deception". The Guardian. Retrieved 2008-08-15.
  19. Janine Gibson (18 October 2007). "ITV Call-TV Deception: Deliberate, Routine and Editorial". Guardian Unlimited. (OrganGrinder, MediaGuardian). Retrieved 2008-05-12. Michael Grade promised zero tolerance of viewer deception, but ITV's response to the Deloitte report is not good enough.
  20. "The Winners: 2007". British Comedy Awards. Retrieved 2008-05-12.
  21. "The British Comedy Awards - Past Winners". Retrieved 21 February 2013.
  23. "British Comedy Awards: List of winners in full". The Independent. 12 December 2013. Retrieved 13 December 2013.
  24. "Jo Brand wins best sitcom for Getting On at the British Comedy Awards". Guardian. 13 December 2013. Retrieved 13 December 2013.
  25. "Was drunken Comedy Awards 'shambles' a new low for Channel 4? Backlash from viewers over expletive-laden 'car-crash' broadcast". Daily Mail. 13 December 2013. Retrieved 13 December 2013.
Wikimedia Commons has media related to British Comedy Awards.
Wikinews has related news: ITV postpones broadcast of 2007 British Comedy Awards
This article is issued from Wikipedia - version of the 11/19/2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.