Irish comedian Brendan O’Carroll has taken the next step in making his alter-ego Mrs Brown a global phenomenon, by selling the format of ‘Mrs Brown’s Boys’ to a number of global production companies.
O’Carroll has retained the rights to his BAFTA-winning show, but has sold the format idea to territories in Romania, Russia, and the Czech Republic. MediaPro Distribution has bought the format with the intent to sell to Russian and Czech Republican territories. The deals were negotiated for O’Carroll by his Dublin-based solicitor Simon Carty.
These Soviet Bloc countries are currently one of the leading territories in buying international formats, with a Russian TV station recently buying 200 scripts of ABC sitcom ‘Roseanne’, and CBS’s ‘Everybody Loves Raymond’ proving to be a huge hit with Russian audiences after it was especially adapted for the region.
Mrs Brown's Boys is a BBC Scotland co-production with BOCPIX in association with RTÉ. The series is produced by Stephen McCrum (BBC) and the producer for BOCPIX is Martin Delany.
It first aired on RTÉ in 2010 and was an instant ratings success. BBC One currently airs it in a peak-time Saturday night slot. Justin Healy is the executive producer for RTÉ and Ewan Angus is the executive producer for BBC Scotland.
O’Carroll plays the title role of Dublin mother-of-five Agnes Brown, with his own wife, Jennifer Gibney, playing daughter Cathy Brown, his son Danny O’Carroll playing Brown family friend Buster Brady, and his daughter Fiona O’Carroll playing Maria Nicholson.
The family-led show won an IFTA and a BAFTA this year in the Entertainment Programme category and for Best Situation Comedy, respectively.
The home-grown show is the latest RTÉ show to have been sold globally, with Vision Independent Productions’ ‘The Restaurant’ and Showhouse’ currently doing the rounds in Italy and America.
O’Carroll’s ‘Mrs. Brown’s Boys’ also enjoys air time in South Africa, New Zealand, Australia and Canada, and it was reported last week that the Dublin-born comic has just signed a €5m deal with Universal to develop a feature film version of the sketch show.