Two New UKTV Originals Headed to W


LONDON: The UKTV entertainment channel W has commissioned the new documentary series Dancing for the Weekend and The Dressing Room.

Dancing for the Weekend explores the lives of average individuals who participate in dance competitions over the weekend. The 6×60-minute docuseries is produced by Electric Ray and is due to debut in 2017.

Helen Nightingale, UKTV’s executive producer, commented: “I’m thrilled to be working with Electric Ray on this exciting new series for W. The amazing people we have found will inspire, amuse and enthrall with their energy and vigor for the world of amateur dance.”

Steve North, W’s general manager, noted: “It’s an exciting time for W as we continue to broaden our programming. Dancing for the Weekend captures the extraordinary passions of ordinary people and will be full of warm, funny and inspirational characters.”

Meredith Chambers, executive producer for Electric Ray, said: “The amateur dancers we’ve met are phenomenal characters—funny and warm, passionate and theatrical. Somehow they’ve got the energy to get into sequined lycra after a full day’s work or after they’ve put the kids to bed—we can’t wait to bring their dazzling lives to the screen for W.”

The Dressing Room, also slated for broadcast next year, spotlights ordinary people who take part in team sports. The 6×60-minute fixed-rig docuseries is co-produced by STV Productions and GroupM Entertainment. The format and finished program will be sold internationally by Passion Distribution.

Iain Coyle, senior commissioning editor for UKTV, stated: “The Dressing Room is one of those ideas that, when you hear it, you can’t quite believe it’s not been done before. It’s so simple but has a unique mixture of the genuinely moving, funny, motivational and, ultimately, life-affirming. Be prepared for the hair on the back of your neck to stand up.”

North remarked: “The Dressing Room promises a unique insight into the way we relate as people during our most highly charged moments. By taking a pared-down approach with fly-on-the-wall documentary, our viewers will see the human connections that people make on and off the pitch, making this a warm-hearted and life-affirming series.”

Gary Chippington, head of entertainment at STV Productions, said: “We’re hugely excited to be exploring the passion, warmth and humor that goes on in dressing rooms across the country every weekend. We look forward to working with GroupM Entertainment on this series for UKTV to bring viewers some truly captivating stories of real people, friendship and emotion from the other side of the dressing room doors.”

Tony Moulsdale, director of programming at GroupM Entertainment, noted: “The Dressing Room is a very exciting project for us. It is our first with UKTV. It grew out of the immensely productive development relationship we have with STV Productions. It’s attracting a lot of attention both domestically and internationally and it’s been really exciting working with UKTV to bring this to the screen.”

Richard Watsham, UKTV’s director of commissioning, added: “W is evolving quickly as a channel and so too is our strategy for UKTV Originals. With huge talents like Amanda Holden and John Bishop on board, and more big names to come, we’ve targeted intelligent, warm and revealing factual series to compliment them.

“The sheer joy and vitality that comes across from seeing our characters’ passions writ large make these modern doc series a perfect fit for our growing audience on W.

“Both The Dressing Room and Dancing for the Weekend will be strong partners for our existing W commission, mobile fixed-rig show Inside the Ambulance, which has just finished filming.”