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BBC Children’s commissions original comedy series, Jacqueline Wilson adaptation

Robert Webb and Isy Suttie star in High Hoops

BBC Children’s & Education has commissioned an original live-action comedy series starring Robert Webb as well as an adaptation of British kids’ author Jacqueline Wilson’s book The Primrose Railway Children for CBBC and iPlayer.

The comedy series is called High Hoops and is produced by Yorkshire-based CanCan Productions. Filmed in Halifax, the 10×30’ sitcom tells the story of a charmingly reckless high-school basketball player and her chaotic pursuit of success, fame, love and the perfect hook shot. Webb stars as the school headmaster, with fellow former Peep Show actor Isy Suttie also starring.

High Hoops is written by basketball player and coach Sinead Fagan, produced by Dominique Molloy and directed by Ian Curtis. APC Kids is handling international distribution of the series, which will debut later this year.

Wilson’s The Primrose Railway Children, meanwhile, is inspired by E Nesbit’s classic 1905 novel The Railway Children. The BBC adaptation will take the form of a 1×90’ feature-length episode and will premiere later this year.

Produced by BBC Studios Kids & Family Productions and filmed in and around Glasgow and the Scottish Highlands, it follows three children and their mother who are uprooted from their lives in the city and moved to the remote countryside.

BBC Studios Kids & Family’s creative director for live action, Tali Walters, is creative lead on the project, with Alison Davis exec producing and John McKay producing. BBC Studios handles international distribution.

BBC Children’s has also commissioned two further seasons of live-action series Malory Towers, which is adapted from Enid Blyton’s book of the same name. Joining the cast for the new seasons will be model and actor Ellie Goldstein, who made history as the first model with Down Syndrome to feature in British Vogue.

Filming on the sixth and seventh seasons (both 10×25’) has commenced around Devon and Cornwall. King Bert Productions produces with US broadcaster BYUtv and WildBrain, with the latter holding the distribution rights. The new seasons will premiere in 2025.

Patricia Hidalgo, director of BBC Children’s & Education, said: “Our homegrown dramas continue to be enjoyed by children and their families across the UK and beyond. These three titles are not only brilliant entertainment, but they also represent children’s lives and UK culture in unique ways.”

Hidalgo added that the two series promise “big laughs, silly jokes, high-stakes drama and intrigue, with stories that resonate across generations and across frontiers, bringing families together watching TV.”

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