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Hartlepool’s Sea and Sky Pictures is first partner on BBC Comedy’s Regional Partnership Scheme

Sea and Sky's Adam Bouabda

North East Screen and Hat Trick Productions have announced Sea & Sky pictures as indie partner for BBC Comedy’s first ever Regional Partnership Scheme.

The scheme was announced earlier this year as part of the BBC Newcastle City of Comedy package.

Following an in-depth selection process, Sea & Sky will now co-develop a slate of ideas for BBC Comedy alongside Hat Trick as part of the BBC’s Regional Partnership Scheme.

A total of 25 North East production companies applied for the scheme, with seven then introduced to the Hat Trick team. Three progressed to more detailed conversations. Following these discussions Sea & Sky Pictures has been identified by Hat Trick as the company to work alongside them.

Jimmy Mulville, MD of Hat Trick Productions said: “It’s clear that the North East is teaming with talented producers and writers so it was difficult to select just one company for this opportunity, but having done so I can’t tell you how excited we are to be working with Sea & Sky on getting some brilliant projects to screen.”

Adam Bouabda, MD of Sea & Sky Pictures added: “Sea & Sky Pictures will benefit massively from this partnership because I’ve never had the opportunity to work inside of a big indie, so I feel like we’re getting a look behind the curtain. We’ve got a great slate of comedy projects that I know Hat Trick are going to love, and getting to develop four of them with the experienced team they have is going to make it an interesting journey.”

Sea & Sky Pictures will receive £15,000 as part of the partnership to co-develop a slate of original comedy projects over a six-month period. The indie was formed in 2020 and has so far produced scripted comedy, BFI-funded shorts and online content for commercial clients. Its first feature film, Lore, is currently in post production.

Emma Lawson, commissioning editor, BBC Comedy, added: “The uptake for the scheme has meant that key industry figures have seen just how many strong contenders to make comedy there are in the North East. We hope to be working with many more of the companies over the coming months and have already allocated development funds to support two more companies with their slates.”

The BBC last year announced it will spend at least £25m over the next five years right across the North East to fund network TV production, talent development and support for the creative sector.




















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