Chris O'Dowd to write and star in Sky One comedy

Sky One HDThe IT Crowd‘s Chris O’Dowd is to write and star in new Sky One comedy Moone Boy which will begin filming in January and will feature Johnny Vegas and Steve Coogan in guest roles.

Sky 1 HD announce the commission of Moone Boy (6 x 30’), a joint venture between Baby Cow, Sprout Films, Hod Cod Productions and Grand Pictures. Commissioned by Sky’s Head of Comedy, Lucy Lumsden, the series is written by Chris O’Dowd (Bridesmaids, The IT Crowd) and Nick Vincent Murphy (Hideaways, The Running Mate). Adapted from O’Dowd’s own comedy short for Sky 1 HD in last December’s Little Crackers series, Chris will also star in this part autobiographical comedic look at his life growing up in Ireland in 1989. Moone Boy will start production in O’Dowd’s hometown of Boyle, Co Roscommon and Dublin in the New Year and will be broadcast on Sky 1 HD next summer.

Moone Boy is set in a small town in Ireland in 1989 and follows the antics of the youngest member of the Moone family, 11 year old Martin Moone. Martin has a unique perspective on life aided by an imaginary friend, Sean Murphy, played by Chris O’Dowd. Martin’s imagination comes into play both in his childish drawings, which come alive through animation, and in the ridiculous schemes he comes up with, against Sean’s better judgement. With Sean’s help, Martin negotiates life as the youngest in a chaotic, scatter-brained family. Both Johnny Vegas and Steve Coogan have signed up to take on roles in the series and auditions are underway across several locations in Ireland to find a young actor to take on the lead of Martin Moone. The series will also feature animated elements which will be designed and supplied by Kilkenny-based ‘Cartoon Saloon’ (Skunk Fu, The Secret of Kells).

Moone Boy
further cements Sky’s promise to increase investment in original home-grown content by over 50% in the next three years. By 2014, Sky expects to invest €700 million a year in UK and Irish programming across its portfolio of channels. This commitment follows the success of home-grown content such as entertainment hits Got to Dance and A League of their Own, dramas Mad Dogs, Strike Back and Martina Cole’s The Runaway and  the BAFTA-winning documentary Flying Monsters 3D.

“Moone Boy is a fantastic comedy which centres on a ten year old boy who has an imaginary friend. It is set in the late eighties/early nineties and all of the experiences are ones that I had. It’s a really funny show which has loads of animation and a number of laughs that I hope people will love. It was essential to film in Ireland and what was great about Sky was they wanted us to film here and they were really supportive. That wouldn’t have happened at any other channel.”
– Chris O’Dowd

“We were delighted when Chris O’Dowd decided to expand his Little Cracker into a full series. With Nick Murphy, he’s written six brilliantly funny scripts, Sky customers are in for a treat.” – Lucy Lumsden, Head of Comedy, Sky

Moone Boy is co-written by Chris O’Dowd and Nick Vincent Murphy. The series will be directed by Declan Lowney (Little Britain, Father Ted, Help, Happiness, Cold Feet) and produced by Ted Dowd (Gavin and Stacey, Nighty Night, Saxondale). Executive Producers are Henry Normal, Gina Carter, Paul Donovan and Chris O’Dowd.