Gavin and Stacey’s Jones to star in two new BBC4 shows

Former Gavin and Stacey star Ruth Jones is to lead the cast of a new BBC4 comedy called The Great Outdoors.

The show, which also stars Mark Heap and tells the story of a group of ramblers, is a co-production between the Corporation and Jones’ own company, Tidy Productions.

Paul Schlesinger, the shows executive producer, said: “Rambling is such a great British institution. It’s a brilliant subject for a character comedy. And what’s really exciting is that with Ruth Jones and Mark Heap we have two of the best comedy actors around at the centre of it.”

It is being written by Kevin Cecil and Andy Riley and is being shot on a handheld camera to offer viewers what the BBC describes as a “virtual experience of walking alongside the characters”.

The Great Outdoors was commissioned by BBC4 controller Richard Klein and controller of BBC comedy commissioning Cheryl Taylor.

Meanwhile, Jones is also to star as actress Hattie Jacques, best known for her work on the Carry On films, in a new BBC4 drama called Hattie.

Jones said: “Hattie Jacques is a comedy heroine of mine and I’m thrilled to have been asked to play her. She was an incredibly talented and fascinating woman both on and off screen and so much more than just the ‘funny fat lady’.”

Angel Eye Media, a Glasgow-based independent production company, is producing the one-off film, which reveals Jacques’ secret affair with a younger man while married to Dad’s Army star John Le Mesurier in the sixties.

Hattie will begin filming in Glasgow at the end of May and will broadcast on BBC4 later this year.

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