New comedy, drama projects for Seven, SBS, Foxtel.

A new sketch comedy with Nazeem Hussain for Seven, a miniseries about an elite boxer for SBS and 2 part drama about nuns on a remote island for Foxtel, are amongst new projects funded by Screen Australia.

Orange is the New Brown from Screentime will mark a long overdue return to sketch comedy for Seven.

Lingo Pictures has 2 projects funded, The Ropes for SBS which follows a young Iraqi-Australian woman chasing her dream to become an elite boxing trainer and Lambs of God for Foxtel, about three eccentric secluded nuns who live on a remote island until a priest unwittingly happens upon them (NB: a co-production with Endemol Shine Australia).

TEN’s previously announced comedy How To Stay Married with Peter Helliar and Lisa McCune is also funded.

In total $7.4 million in funding has been allocated through the feature film, television and online production programs.

How to Stay Married
8 x 23mins
Princess Pictures Pty Ltd & PBL Entertainment Pty Ltd
Genre Comedy, Drama
Producer Jess Leslie
Executive Producers Andrea Denholm, Emma Fitzsimons
Director Natalie Bailey
Writers Peter Helliar, Nick Musgrove
Broadcaster Network Ten
AU/NZ Distributor Universal
International Sales Guesswork Distribution Pty Ltd
Synopsis: Greg & Em Butler have been married thirteen years and they’ve both got used to things just the way they are. So how will they cope with a new job, an unexpected house guest, a redundancy and an experimental sex move?

Orange is the New Brown
6 x 24mins
Screentime Pty Ltd
Genre Comedy
Producer Jack Kain
Executive Producer Johnny Lowry
Director Hayden Guppy
Writers Nazeem Hussain, Joel Slack Smith, Sophie Braham, Richard Thorp, Penny Greenhalgh, Heidi Regan
Broadcaster Seven Network
International Sales Screentime Commercial
Synopsis: Orange is the New Brown is a groundbreaking new series that turns the sketch comedy genre on its head. Featuring rising stars of local comedy as well as some special guests, the show will reflect contemporary Australian life using one-off sketches, original and recurring characters and TV parodies.

The Ropes
4 x 51mins
Lingo Pictures Pty Ltd
Genre Drama
Producers Helen Bowden, Courtney Wise
Executive Producer Jason Stephens
Director Shannon Murphy
Writers Tamara Asmar, Adam Todd, Ian Meadows
Broadcaster SBS
International Sales DCD Rights
Synopsis: A young Iraqi-Australian woman tears apart her family and defies her community to chase her dream of becoming an elite women’s boxing trainer in The Ropes, a drama set in Sydney’s western suburbs.

Lambs of God
2 x 120mins
Lingo Pictures Pty Ltd, Endemol Shine Australia
Genre Drama, Thriller, Mystery
Producer Jason Stephens, Sarah Lambert, Elisa Argenzio
Executive Producer Helen Bowden, Penny Win, Mark Fennessy, Carl Fennessy
Director Jeffrey Walker
Writer Sarah Lambert
Broadcaster Foxtel
International Sales Sky Vision
Synopsis: Three eccentric, secluded nuns live on a remote island, forgotten by time and the Church – until a priest unwittingly happens upon them.


  1. Sketch comedy and Seven, they don’t work well together. The last sketch show Seven aired was Kinne and that ended up on a frantic schedule.

  2. Can’t SBS move past dramas featuring Middle Eastern characters? Aren’t there any other stories that could be told about this multicultural and diverse country of ours?

    • In fairness the SBS are quite culturally diverse with their content as they have been recently with Gay relationship themes and indigenous stories, the Middle East is a constant hot topic and has its obvious political social commentary attraction for TV drama Worldwide.

  3. “Orange is the New Brown is a groundbreaking new series…and TV parodies.”

    Uh-oh. When sketch writers have to resort to TV parodies it means they’ve run out of ideas.

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