General News

Ben Elton hurt by TV show axe

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Jul 10, 2013 | 6:03am EDT

British funnyman Ben Elton has been left feeling "bruised" by the cancellation of his new TV show after just one season following low ratings and scathing reviews from critics. The screenwriter/author, who created scripts for TV classics including Blackadder and The Young Ones, made a return to the small screen earlier this year (13) by launching a new sitcom called The Wright Way, about an uptight health and safety manager. However, the show was hit with a slew of bad reviews, with Adam Postans of Britain's Daily Mirror newspaper branding it the "worst sitcom ever", and BBC bosses have now confirmed the show has been axed. Speaking during a Broadcasting Press Guild lunch on Tuesday (09Jul13), Shane Allen, the BBC's controller of comedy commissioning, revealed Elton was devastated by the bad reviews. Allen said, "He set out to write an old-fashioned mainstream comedy and he did exactly that. Ben Elton was really bruised by the reception. He felt, 'If people aren't loving this I am not going to put myself through it again'. Maybe 10, 15 years ago, you might have gone, 'What did people like about it, what are the characters that worked', but people are quite quick to judge and to crucify these days. "It didn't catch fire with the audience but it wasn't what you could call a flop... I think it was a valiant effort from the guy who co-wrote Blackadder and The Young Ones. "As a major name in British comedy you give Ben Elton a chance. We are not going to bring back The Wright Way but I'd give him another chance on something else if it felt right and was compelling."

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