HBO signs up ‘Little Britain’ duo

Lucas, Walliams to make U.S. set series

LONDON — Following the success of Brit Ricky Gervais’ comedy skein “Extras,” HBO has ordered up a six-part series based on U.K. comedians Matt Lucas and David Walliams’ hit laffer “Little Britain.”

Billed as a “sketch show set in contemporary America,” series will be exec produced by “American Idol” producer Simon Fuller and is set to debut in 2008. Lucas and Walliams will share exec producer credits, alongside David Steinberg, while Larry Brezner is on board as producer.

Originally a radio program on the Beeb, “Little Britain” has become one of Blighty’s most successful comedies in recent years, with ratings for the third series, which aired on BBC1, topping nine million viewers. The series has also picked up eight Royal Television Society awards, three BAFTAs and an International Emmy.

According to Walliams, the U.S. series will feature a number of existing characters from the U.K. show, as well as new characters and ideas.

Nancy Geller, senior vice president, HBO Entertainment, described Lucas and Walliams as “two of the most exciting new comedy voices to emerge in recent years.”

Like Gervais’ BBC comedy hit “The Office,” “Little Britain” has already aired in the U.S. on cable channel BBC America.

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