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TVNZ takes on more Taskmaster

The NZ adaptation of Taskmaster is produced by Kevin & Co

The New Zealand version of UK comedy format Taskmaster is returning for a second season on TVNZ 2, backed by funding body NZ On Air.

Taskmaster New Zealand will return for a second, 10×44′ season with Jeremy Wells as the Taskmaster and Paul Williams as his awkward accomplice.

The format, produced in New Zealand by Kevin & Co, sees five Kiwi comedians go head-to-head to complete a series of bizarre, tricky and often ingenious tasks.

Created by comedian Alex Horne, the format was originally produced by Avalon in the UK and premiered on UKTV channel Dave in 2015, before moving to commercially funded pubcaster Channel 4 last year. It has also been remade across the Nordics.

NZ On Air has invested NZ$1.2m (US$860,000) in three productions, including TVNZ 2’s coverage of the Best Foods Comedy Gala 2021 (2×66′).

Its coverage of New Zealand’s main comedy event will see seasoned crowd favourites returning to the stage as well as introducing audiences to up-and-coming local comic talent.

The funding body has also backed Dox (1×90′), based on the true story of two Tongan rugby fans who convinced their community to form a brass band to secure front-row seats to the 2011 Tonga vs France Rugby World Cup game.

As their plan unravels, the bonds of friendship, community and what it means to be Tongan are pushed to the limit – all to the tune of amateur trumpets. Produced by Piki Films, Dox will screen on Discovery-owned Three after a theatrical release.

“Supporting the development of local comedians and creatives is a fundamental part of NZ On Air’s mahi [the Māori word for work],” said NZ On Air head of funding, Amie Mills.

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