ADRIAN CHILES – CLAUDIA WINKLEMAN – JONNIE PEACOCK MBE – LADY LESHURR – BARONESS SAYEEDA WARSI
Feeling in a particularly festive mood, the almighty Taskmaster Greg Davies has once again gathered five famous faces from radically different specialities for another standalone special on Channel 4 with ‘Taskmaster’s New Year Treat’. Set to air over the festive season, the formidable Taskmaster will put these celebrity guests through their paces in a series of ludicrous challenges supervised by his devoted sidekick, assistant, and stats keeper Little Alex Horne.
Our well-known contestants hoping to impress are: broadcaster and journalist Adrian Chiles (BBC Radio 5 Live), television and radio presenter Claudia Winkleman (Strictly Come Dancing, BBC One), double Paralympic, World & European 100m Champion Jonnie Peacock MBE (Jonnie’s Blade Camp, Channel 4), rapper, singer, songwriter, producer, and TV personality Lady Leshurr (Don’t Hate the Playaz, ITV 2), and lawyer, businesswoman, campaigner and Ex Cabinet Minister Baroness Sayeeda Warsi (Have I Got News for You, BBC One), who will each compete for a chance to win a coveted Taskmaster trophy in the most ridiculous game show on television.
Transmission details will be confirmed in due course.
WHAT THE PRESS HAVE SAID ABOUT TASKMASTER:
“This has become one of the funniest shows on television”
Helen Stewart, The Sunday Times
“Taskmaster is a beacon of silliness; a show that leaves dignity at the door and offers good-natured absurdity instead”
Phil Harrison, The Observer
“Now on its 12th series, and still probably the funniest show on TV”
“This is the 12th series of the BAFTA-winning show, but the well of ingeniously tedious tasks will seemingly never run dry. Davies and Horne are a fine double act, and their “pre-prepared banter” is as much a reason to watch as the tasks”
Joe Clay, The Times
“Alex Horne’s peculiarly brilliant imagination keeps churning out inventive challenges, Greg Davies continues to hand out withering insults and a steady stream of competitors line up to take both on the chin, they could screen this wonderful show all year round and no one would much mind”
Gabriel Tate, The Daily Telegraph
“The formula has evolved slightly over the years and across the channels, but it’s still the case that for pure, artisanal silliness, there’s not much that can beat a dose of Taskmaster”
David Butcher, Radio Times
“on the basis of this opening episode, it’s going to be an excellent series”
★★★★★ Steven Perkins, TV Times Magazine
“The peculiarly addictive, even oddly poignant affair, is back for a 12th series, as greg Davies’s eponymous mad god put the latest lost souls through their pointless paces”
Ali Catteral, The Guardian
“Back with more absurd mayhem, this is possibly the best comedy game show on telly”
Sara Wallis, The Daily Mirror
“The hilarious, BAFTA-winning game show is best for a 12th series, and its as wacky as ever”
★★★★ Daily Mail
“Taskmaster is still the most reliably lough-out-loud show”
★★★★★ Mail on Sunday
“[A] sort of wonderful silliness that makes this show unique (well, until the copycats arrived”
Gerrard Gilbert, The I
“The most consistently funny show on TV returns for series 12”
Simon Ward, Virgin Media
“I’m beyond delighted to report that the wonderful Greg Davies and the wonderful Alex Horne are back with another series of the wonderful Taskmaster”
Mike Ward, Daily Express
★★★★ Boyd Hilton, Heat Magazine
“As always, it’s fun, incredibly silly and very funny viewing”
The Sun TV Mag
“Alex Horne’s ridiculous challenge show continues to be the most reliably entertaining hour on TV”
Total TV Guide
“There’s an infantile joy in comedy game show Taskmaster. Now in it’s 12th series, and about to reach the 100th episode, its becoming more popular than ever, and comedians are falling over themselves top take part”
Tom Spilsbury, TV Choice
★★★★ JL, TV Times Magazine
“Taskmaster is one of the best TV Game shows of all time. Fact”
Sara Wallis, The People
“Its pure mindless fun… it often veers into unexpectedly hilarious territory”
Simon Bland, Joe.co.uk
NOTES TO EDITORS:
- Taskmaster is a BAFTA winning and International Emmy nominated comedy entertainment show originally created by Alex Horne. Greg Davies stars as the all-powerful “Taskmaster” who, with the help of his loyal assistant Horne, sets out to test the wiles, wit and wisdom of five comedians through a series of strange and surreal challenges in what is the most hard-fought and ridiculous comedy entertainment format on TV.
- 117 episodes have been produced in the UK so far, with a further 21 ordered by Channel 4 as part of a landmark six season deal in 2020. Series 10 – 15 air on Channel 4 from Autumn 2020, following nine record-breaking series on UKTV’s Dave.
- The show enjoyed its best performance on record with it’s Channel 4 launch which reached 3.9 million consolidated views after the first episode, winning the majority share of young viewers 16 – 34’s and making it the best-performing new entertainment show of this year (Broadcast, 2020). Since the programme’s initial launch in 2015 on UKTV’s Dave, Taskmaster’s audience has grown by 80% from series one to series nine.
- Taskmaster was crowned Best Comedy Entertainment at the BAFTAs 2020 and won Best Entertainment Programme at the Broadcast Awards 2018, having previously received two more nominations for both awards. It has also been nominated for the Bruce Forsyth Entertainment Award at the NTA’s 2021, Studio Entertainment at Rose d’Or 2021, Best Entertainment Programme at the RTS Awards, Broadcasting Press Guild Awards, the Broadcast Digital Awards, Edinburgh TV Award, the TV Choice Awards, and Best Returning Format in the International Format Awards 2020.
- The original Taskmaster programme has been sold to 94 countries, while the format has been sold to 12 with 150 local episodes being made outside the UK including local versions of the show produced for VTM in Belgium, TVE in Spain, and two series for TVNZ in New Zealand. While the original show aired on The CW in the U.S. in 2020.
- The format has seen huge success in Europe, with the Swedish version winning Programme of the Year at the Kristallen in 2020 and 2019 (Sweden’s TV Academy Awards) and its fifth series for SVT reaching ratings of over a 50% market share in a primetime weekend slot. Norway’s original version of Taskmaster, ‘Kongen Befaler’’s won Best Entertainment Show at the prestigious Golden Screen Awards 2020 and won the Norwegian TV Academy Award (Gullruten) for Best Entertainment in 2020, where a fourth has been commissioned by Discovery. Two new series have been ordered for MTV in Finland after its first episode ranked in the top ten most watched shows in the country, and a fifth series for TV2 in Denmark.
- The Taskmaster YouTube channel has seen huge success internationally, reaching just under 3 billion impressions since it first launched in October 2019, with just under half of the channel’s views and over a third of its subscribers originate from the U.S. The channel has had over 45 million hours of content viewed with 55% of those hours from the US (25 million hours watched). The show has grown significantly in popularity with U.S. audiences and over the last year there have been total of 56 million views, that’s a 152% increase on the previous 12 months (22 million views), while a total of 16 million hours have been watched making a 165% increase on the previous 12 months (6 million hours).
- #HomeTasking had over 100 million impressions across all content on YouTube. Viewing grew by 42%, while subscribers grew by 85% since it launched on the Taskmaster YouTube channel. It was watched in 125 countries with viewers ranging from the US to the UK and from Moldova to Mongolia.
- The Taskmaster Book 200 Extraordinary Tasks for Ordinary People has sold over 136,251 copies, while a second book ‘Bring Me The Head of the Taskmaster’ published in September 2021 and has sold almost 30,000 to date. Both books featured as Sunday Times Bestsellers at launch. The Swedish version of the book has sold 70,000 copied to date.
- A Taskmaster boardgame was released in Autumn 2019 and entirely sold out a week after it went on sale. It has sold almost 180,000 copies to date along with an expansion pack which was released this year along with the launch of the official Taskmaster shop.
- Taskmaster is working with Homeless Link; the national membership charity for frontline homelessness services, creating a virtual Taskmaster at Home event with all the money raised going to homeless charities across the UK. Having raised over £115,000, the virtual event is running throughout the winter months and further information can be found here.