BBC Head Of Comedy Kate Daughton Quits Amid Changes To Commissioning Team Behind ‘Fleabag’03/27/2021
EXCLUSIVE: The BBC’s head of comedy Kate Daughton and comedy commissioner Sarah Asante are both leaving the British broadcaster after more than five years, Deadline hears.
Daughton is stepping down after first joining the BBC in April 2016. She declined to comment on her next move, but there is speculation that she could return to program making. Daughton previously produced Matt Berry’s BAFTA-winning Toast, a show that she helped revive for the BBC earlier this year, with the cult character heading to Hollywood.
During her time at the BBC, Daughton’s commissioning credits included the second season of Emmy-winning Fleabag and two seasons of Stephen Merchant’s upcoming community service series The Offenders, which will star Christopher Walken and is co-produced by Amazon. Other hits on her watch included Ghosts and Steve Coogan’s This Time With Alan Partridge.
Meanwhile, Asante is joining UKTV as a commissioning editor. She will get to work at the BBC Studios-owned broadcaster on April 12, commissioning for Dave and Gold, and reporting to head of scripted Pete Thornton. Asante has worked at the BBC since November 2016, ordering comedies including Black British sketch show Famalam.
The departures come after BBC comedy controller Shane Allen brought in I May Destroy You producer Tanya Qureshi as a commissioner, and plucked Hannah Rose from BBC Sounds to work as an assistant commissioner in the north of England. The changes are seen as a creative refresh and Allen will be hiring a replacement for Daughton.
Commenting on Asante’s arrival at UKTV, Thornton said: “I know that UKTV is going to benefit hugely from Sarah’s experience and enthusiasm and I’m really looking forward to working with her on our burgeoning scripted slate.” Asante hailed UKTV’s “commitment to amplifying more underrepresented voices in comedy.”
The broadcaster’s scripted comedy lineup includes Red Dwarf, Meet The Richardsons, and the upcoming Murder, They Hope.
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