Channel 4 Comedy and Amazon Studios Announce "Frank of Ireland" with the Gleeson Brothers
Channel 4 and Amazon Studios are frankly gleeful to announce the commission of Frank of Ireland, a brand-new series from Sharon Horgan and Clelia Mountford's Merman starring Brian Gleeson. A co-production between Channel 4 and Amazon Studios, the 6x30 series is the first comic vision penned by brothers Brian and Domhnall Gleeson and Michael Moloney.
Frank Marron, played by Brian Gleeson (Peaky Blinders, The Bisexual), is a 32-year-old catastrophe. A misanthropic, narcissistic, fantasist in arrested development who thinks the world owes him something. But, nonetheless, he's our hero. They don't all wear capes, okay?!
Frank lives in Dublin with his mother Mary (Pom Boyd, Rosie, Rialto,Snakes and Ladders), and that's fine. He is single and his pocket money hasn't increased in a decade or more, but you know what?! That's fine too. Frank is a musician, understood? He hasn't written a song or played a gig in seven years and five months, but that is totally, 100% fine. His ex-girlfriend Aine (Sarah Greene, Dublin Murders, Rosie, Ransom) has a new boyfriend Peter-Brian (Tom Vaughan-Lawlor, Dublin Murders, Rialto, Avengers: Endgame) for the first time since they split, and Frank may be finding that a tad difficult, alright? When did they part, you ask? About seven years and five months ago, give or take a day, but that's a total coincidence, just in case you're wondering. It's all absolutely fine. Frank is fine.
Frank is also fine because of his wingman (read gopher) Doofus, played by Domhnall Gleeson (The Revenant, Ex-Machina, The Force Awakens). Doofus foolishly thinks they are best friends and it's his job to blow smoke up, facilitate and attempt to fix the relentless debris in Frank's wake. It's a big job for such a fellow.
Frank of Ireland is a physical and ridiculous brand of humour with an original twist. Filming in Dublin and Belfast has just begun with the transmission date on Channel 4 to be announced in due course (probably when Frank feels like it). It will be available on Amazon Prime Video in the US, Canada and Australia.
Brian, Domhnall, and Michael Moloney said: "We're so excited to work with MJ, Sharon, and Clelia ?on this, our first and (we've been told) last television series."
Sharon Horgan, Merman Co-founder, added: "Working with the Gleeson Brothers has been like living in a very funny, existential dreamscape. I laughed so much making the pilot that it became annoying. So Clelia and I are very glad and relieved they still chose to make this series with us."
Fiona McDermott, Head of Comedy at Channel 4, says: "We're delighted to welcome Domhnall and Brian to Channel 4 for their comedy debut. They are talented in ways Frank and his wildest dreams could only hope to emulate; we can't wait for viewers to see the unashamedly ridiculous and hilarious new show they've created."
Brad Beale, Vice President of Worldwide Content Licensing, Amazon Studios: "Frank of Ireland is smart, wholly original and incredibly funny. We're thrilled to work with Brian and Domhnall to bring our Prime Video customers this terrific new comedy."
The series has been commissioned for Channel 4 by Head of Comedy Fiona McDermott and Commissioning Editor Jack Bayles and is written by Brian and Domhnall Gleeson, and Michael Moloney. For Merman, Executive Producers are Clelia Mountford and Sharon Horgan along with Brian Gleeson, Domhnall Gleeson and Michael Moloney. The series is produced by Rory Gilmartin and Directed by MJ Delaney for Merman.
Merman was founded in 2014 by award-winning duo Sharon Horgan and Clelia Mountford. Since then, Merman has gathered multiple accolades the world over, including BAFTA, Emmy and RTS wins and nominations.
Merman's most recent projects include Channel 4/Hulu comedy drama This Way Up starring and written by Aisling Bea, a second series of Motherland for BBC2, and the SKY/ABC comedy drama Frayed starring and written by Sarah Kendall (Beehive), which also stars Diane Morgan (Motherland) and award-winning comedian Robert Webb (Peep Show) amongst others.
Further Merman projects include BAFTA Award-winning There She Goes for BBC4, starring David Tennant and Jessica Hynes; Women on the Verge for UKTV's W channel, starring Kerry Condon, Nina Sosanya and Eileen Walsh and written by Lorna Martin; Motherland for BBC2 starring Anna Maxwell Martin, Lucy Punch and Diane Morgan; Bliss for Sky 1 starring Heather Graham and Stephen Mangan; four series of the award-winning Catastrophe for Channel 4/Amazon created by and starring Sharon Horgan and Rob Delaney; and Divorce by Sharon Horgan for HBO starring Sarah Jessica Parker and Thomas Hayden Church.
Merman has also produced multiple shorts for Sky Arts across its different strands, including the BAFTA TV award-winning Morgana Robinson's Summer: Dream Land, and Andy and the Donald in the recent season of Urban Myths.
With offices in LA and NYC, Merman works in all areas of the worlds of entertainment and communications including creating and executing the next generation of branded entertainment.
Merman Founders Clelia Mountford and Sharon Horgan first met on Season 1 of The Increasingly Poor Decisions of Todd Margaret as producer and actor respectively. Both enjoyed full and diverse careers before joining forces to create Merman. In addition to working with established writers, actors and directors around the world, they remain committed to discovering and nurturing new talent as the Merman family grows. www.hellomerman.com
About Channel 4
Channel 4 is a publicly-owned yet commercially-funded public service broadcaster and has a remit to be innovative, experimental and distinctive. Its public ownership and not-for-profit status ensure all profit generated by its commercial activity is directly reinvested back into the delivery of its public service remit.
Channel 4 comedy programming is original, bold, and distinctive. Recent output includes award-winning series Derry Girls, Catastrophe, Stath Lets Flats, Friday Night Dinner, This Way Up, The Bisexual, The Windsors and Home.
As a publisher-broadcaster, Channel 4 is also required to commission UK content from the independent production sector and currently works with around 300 creative companies across the UK every year. In addition to the main Channel 4 service, its portfolio includes: E4, More4, Film4, 4seven, Channel4.com, streaming service All 4 and The Box Plus Network, including 4Music.
About Amazon Studios
Amazon Studios is the home for talent, creating and producing original films and television series for a global audience. Original series all premiere exclusively on Amazon Prime Video, which is available in over 200 countries and territories. Recent hit Amazon Original series include the Emmy Award-winning comedies Fleabag, created by and starring Emmy Award-winner Phoebe Waller-Bridge, and The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel from Emmy Award-winners Amy Sherman-Palladino and Daniel Palladino, as well as the action thriller drama Tom Clancy's Jack Ryan starring John Krasinski, the irreverent superhero series The Boys, and fantasy drama Carnival Row starring Orlando Bloom and Cara Delevingne; Amazon Originals also include culturally relevant and buzzed about content such as Rihanna's Savage X Fenty music and fashion event, Donald Glover's Guava Island and Chasing Happiness, a documentary about pop superstars the Jonas Brothers.
In film, Amazon Studios produces and acquires original movies for theatrical release and exclusively for Amazon Prime Video. In 2017, Amazon Studios became the first streaming service to win Oscars for Manchester by the Sea and The Salesman. Amazon Studios' recent releases include Tom Harper's The Aeronauts starring Felicity Jones and Eddie Redmayne, Scott Z. Burns' The Report starring Adam Driver and Annette Bening, Honey Boy from director Alma Har'el based on a script written by Shia LaBeouf, Benedict Andrews' Seberg starring Kristen Stewart and the Academy Award nominated Les Misérables from director Ladj Ly.