Just two months after being axed from their schedules, ITV’s longest-running comedy show, Benidorm has won Best Comedy at the prestigious, TV Choice award ceremony, held last Sunday.
The BAFTA award-winning comedy series, filmed on location in and around the resort, made household names of the actors who played the loveable cast of larger than life characters.
However, ITV bosses, decided to pull the plug, after the tenth season of the record-breaking, prime time show, despite its regular appearances towards the top of the TV listings.
At the time, creator and writer of Benidorm, DerrenLitten, admitted the decision was not unexpected, but likened the crew to one big family, so it was not only him that the cancellation affected.
“What people forget, is that we are a big employer in the area”, he explained, “Not just the actors and film crew, who have come back regularly for four months work every spring over the last 11 years, but all the back up team of local technicians, drivers, catering companies and extras who come back year after year.”
However, the TV Choice Awards are voted for by viewers, and Benidorm triumphed over fellow nominees The Big Bang Theory, The Keith & Paddy Picture Show and Not Going Out on the BBC.
It was a fact show creator DerrenLitten was quick to point out when he picked up the gong – shortly after tweeting: ‘Pissed already. Hope we don’t win because I don’t know my own name right now.’
He told the audience at the ceremony: “This is awkward. We’ve just been cancelled. The show has just been cancelled.”
Litten then likened the award to being sacked from your job and then being recognised as employee of the month.
Despite being cancelled by ITV, the sitcom has been turned into a live show featuring many of the original cast, which kicked off a UK tour at the Theatre Royal in Newcastle last week and continues well into 2019.
In another piece of good news for the writer, the pilot episode of his new baby, a 30-minute situation comedy set in another famous seaside town, but this time in England, has been commissioned by the BBC.
Fronted by former Coronation Street star Katherine Kelly, comedian Jason Manford and veteran actress Stephanie Cole, ‘Scarborough’, which is set to air late next year, “follows the lives and loves of a small handful of residents in Scarborough, the sometime sunny beach resort in North Yorkshire, who meet most nights in the local karaoke bar where they swap gossip and sing 80’s classics”.
Sound familiar? Well, if the show is even half as successful as its predecessor, the BBC have a sure-fire winner on their hands.