10 Nov 2021
The factual entertainment series will be A+E Networks UK’s first commission from Nit Television and is due to premiere mid-2022.
Britain’s Greatest Obsessions (w/t) will see a host of top celebrities explore uniquely British preoccupations and passions to find out what makes the British tick. Each episode sees one celebrity guest presenter undertake a journey through British culture and history, to find out how and why these particular subjects have become so embedded in our collective psyche and national identity.
The stories behind each yield hitherto unknown facts from the past, as well as fascinating, funny and sometimes poignant revelations about who we are and how much, or how little, we have in common.
Featured in the series will be Harry Hill, getting under the skin of the famed British sense of humour; Chris Packham, talking about the British love of pets; Liza Tarbuck will guide us through our national obsession with all things weather-related; Madness front-man Suggs will be our expert guide to Britain’s pastime of drinking and fondness for pubs; American comedian Reginald D Hunter (joined by class “warrior” Alexei Sayle) will peel away the thin veneer that disguises Britain’s enduring class system and the part played within it by the Royal Family; and Lorraine Kelly will explain our continual harking back to Winston Churchill and the part played by Britain in the Allied victory in World War II.
Liza Tarbuck said: “I started my foray into the weather with the light-hearted attitude that in the UK the weather is essentially small talk. It’s anything but. Weather is everything, it governs daily choices, food, mood and history, everything and I’ve a horrible feeling that attempting to verbalise its rhythms and poetry is an idiot’s game. Hello!!”
Harry Hill said: “We in this country are so proud and pleased with our sense of humour, for some reason we see it as another thing we’ve got over the rest of the World. Where did that come from?! I’ve had so much talking to the experts and trying to find out. From my hilarious German friend Henning Wehn to Punch and Judy man John Styles. I have answers – and they’ll surprise you!”
Reginald D Hunter said: “One of the reasons I came to this country was because I was curious about Britain’s obsession with not liking people who look like you. I found this to be a very evolved prejudice, much better than the simple racism I was accustomed to back home. I enjoyed exploring the many nuanced layers of the class system in Britain, and I am especially grateful to Comrade Alexis Sayle for coming along for the ride!”
Suggs adds: “It’s no secret that I am a connoisseur of the pub. So, I jumped at the chance to unearth and share stories of these great British institutions….and of course accepted my duties to sample some of their delights along the way.”
The series is commissioned, and executive produced by Dan Korn, VP of Programming at A+E Networks UK, with Diana Carter, Commissioning Editor and Head of Talent at A+E Networks UK.
Dan Korn said: “I’m so delighted to be continuing our exploration of the British psyche and sensibilities in the company of such an eminent cast of comedians, artists and experts. Where else but Sky HISTORY can you get such a unique British ‘brains trust’, in which Suggs rubs shoulders with Chris Packham, Lorraine Kelly with Harry Hill, along, of course, with the sublime talents of Reginald D Hunter and Liza Tarbuck? It’s great to be working with Mob Dar and his great team at Nit TV and the Motion Content Group on what promises to be a highly entertaining and ground-breaking series.”
Britain’s Greatest Obsessions (w/t) is co-produced by Nit Television, the joint venture between Harry Hill and CPL Productions, a Red Arrow Studios company, and Motion Content Group for the A+E Networks UK channel Sky HISTORY.
Martin Oxley, Head of Formats and Entertainment UK for Motion, adds: “From cream teas to odd socks there are so many everyday elements of life in Britain that one can get ‘over the top’ obsessed about. Motion couldn’t be any more thrilled than we are to be joining NIT TV and A+E Networks UK alongside such illustrious talent in exploring 6 of the best British obsessions.”.
The Series Editor is Meriel Beale and Series Director is Marcus Liversedge. The Executive Producers are Mobashir Dar, Murray Boland, Danielle Lux and Harry Hill; the Executive Producer for Motion Content Group is Martin Oxley.
Nit Television Executive Producer Mobashir Dar said: “What a treat to be working with six fantastic hosts on such a funny and revealing series. I hope Sky HISTORY viewers become obsessed with Britain’s Greatest Obsessions!”
Britain’s Greatest Obsessions (w/t) is in production and is set to broadcast on Sky HISTORY in 2022.