THE BAFTA AND NATIONAL COMEDY AWARD WINNING SHOW WILL STAR:
FRANKIE BOYLE, IVO GRAHAM, JENNY ECLAIR, KIELL SMITH-BYNOE, MAE MARTIN
“It’s fair to say that Taskmaster has become a pop-culture phenomenon”
Boyd Hilton, Heat Magazine ★★★★
“This has become one of the funniest shows on television”
Helen Stewart, The Sunday Times
“there is nothing as thrillingly funny as… Taskmaster”
Stephen Kelly, The Guardian
LONDON – Thursday 1st December – As the sun sets on the latest series of the international hit show, Taskmaster reveals a brand-new line-up of contestants who are set to compete in the 15th series of the critically-acclaimed task tournament. The infallible Greg Davies will resume his role as the formidable Taskmaster, accompanied by his faithful sidekick Little Alex Horne who is poised and ready to provide stats, data and occasional comfort in the most bizarre yet cut-throat show on television.
The pair will adjudicate, praise and scorn accordingly the efforts of comedian and TV host Frankie Boyle (Frankie Boyle’s New World Order, BBC Two), stand-up comedian Ivo Graham (Have I Got News For You, BBC One), award-winning comedian Jenny Eclair (Older and Wider), actor and writer Kiell Smith-Bynoe (Ghosts, BBC One), and award-winning Canadian comedian, actor, writer and producer Mae Martin (Feel Good, Netflix). After 10 episodes, one contestant will emerge victorious, and in their humble hands they will be holding the single greatest prize in the history of television: the Taskmaster’s golden head glued to a small plinth.
The news arrives ahead of the third instalment of Taskmaster’s New Year Treat which is set to air on Channel 4 this winter with a one-off line-up of celebrity contestants from entirely different and diverse spheres of entertainment including: comedian, creator, host and journalist Amelia Dimoldenberg (Chicken Shop Date), TV host, numbers queen and First Lady of Channel 4 Carol Vorderman (Pride of Britain, ITV), presenter and writer Greg James, four time Olympic Champion Sir Mo Farah, and Mercury Music Prize & Brit Award nominated pop star Rebecca Lucy Taylor aka Self Esteem.
Transmission details will be confirmed in due course
RECENT CRITICAL PRAISE FOR TASKMASTER:
“simple, laugh-out-loud silliness has never been so precious. And no one does that better than Greg Davies and the participants in his deliriously dumb comedy game show”
Mark Wareham, The Mail on Sunday ★★★★
“Now in its 14th season, this comedy challenge show remains one of the most creative and funny shows on the box”
Sara Wallis, The Daily Mirror
“Horne’s tasks… are as joyous and ingenious as ever”
John Dugdale, The Sunday Times
“It can only be the return of Greg Davies in the beloved but oh-so-silly gameshow (with his assistant “Little” Alex Horne by his side)”
Hollie Richardson, The Observer
“Taskmaster Greg Davies as he returns to his gilded throne for the 14th series of this comedy game show… Let the games begin”
Daily Mail ★★★★
“The comedy game show, a wonderful hour of nonsense, is back and as vibrant as ever”
Stuart Pink, The Sun
“A welcome return for the show where five comedians perform daft tasks under the beady eyes of Greg Davies and Alex Horne… The 14th series has a strong line-up… Great fun”
The Daily Telegraph
“If there is a finer double act than Greg Davies and Little Alex Horne, I’d like to know about it. Ant and Dec eat your heart out”
Sara Wallis, The People
“once again, Taskmaster is making comedians despair for our entertainment and after 14 series, it hasn’t lost its touch”
David Butcher, Radio Times
“Greg Davies is back to preside over the 14th series of the BAFTA-winning show, with series creator “Little” Alex Horne once again setting ridiculous challenges for a new bunch of comedians”
TV Times Magazine ★★★★
“back tonight… is the never less than brilliant Taskmaster”
Mike Ward, Daily Star
“The well-oiled machine that is Taskmaster returns for a 14th series with five more comedians competing for bragging rights… the laughs still flow”
Joe Clay, The Times
“It’s become such an institution, such appointment telly, that it’s almost impossible to imagine what life was like before it was nestled among the schedules”
Daily Star on Sunday
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.
- 149 episodes have been produced in the UK so far, as part of a landmark six season deal with Channel 4 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 its 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 Show at the National Comedy Awards 2021, 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 and 2022, 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 and aired on The CW in the U.S. in 2020.
- Over 300 episodes have been produced outside the UK with local versions now on air across the Nordics, in New Zealand, Croatia and Portugal where it ranked third for most watched entertainment programs on its channel RTP. While in Australia Paramount have picked up the rights to make their own local version.
- 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 over 6.1 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 originating from the U.S. The channel has had over 90 million hours worth of content viewed with 41% of those hours from the US (37 million hours watched). The show has grown significantly in popularity with U.S. audiences and over the last year there have been total of 54 million views in the last 12 months reaching a million subscribers, while the channel audience has increased by 438% in the USA.
- #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 148,000 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 108,000 copies 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. Both are available to buy on the official Taskmaster shop, TaskmasterStore.com
- 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, more information on the virtual event can be found here.
- The launch of series 13 also saw the unveiling of the brand new Taskmaster App; a show companion where viewers can watch the show on TV and score along at home, taking on the role of the mighty Taskmaster themselves. The app also features the Taskmaster Academy with quizzes from every series of the show, group and solo tasking games, and a Jukebox featuring all of the music from the show.