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Romesh Ranganathan creates, writes and stars in new comedy series Avoidance

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Romesh Ranganathan stars in this warm and bittersweet comedy series about a man with severe conflict avoidance issues who is forced to change for the sake of his son.

Jonathan’s (Romesh Ranganathan) life revolves around his nine year-old son Spencer, and he’s always deferred the big and small decisions to his partner Claire (Jessica Knappett). So when Claire asks him to leave, Jonathan realises he has no home, no friends and no ambition. Except one: to try to preserve his son’s happiness in the face of his parents’ break-up.

Jonathan takes Spencer and runs away. But he only gets as far as the home of sister Danielle (Mandeep Dhillon) and her wife Courtney (Lisa McGrillis). Over the course of the series, the unlikely foursome gradually become a loving but utterly dysfunctional family unit. Can a Beta male find some backbone? And can Jonathan avoid passing his failings (and his really bad dress sense) on to his son?

Romesh Ranganathan says: “Ben and I first conceived this idea in 2017 and have been thinking about it on and off ever since, so if it disappeared after one series it would be really annoying. If I say the BBC have committed to three series in this quote, do they have to honour that?”

Tanya Qureshi, Commissioning Editor of Comedy for the BBC, says: “Romesh, Ben and the Ranga Bee team have assembled a fantastic cast to bring their modern take on a family sitcom to life. We couldn’t be more excited to share it with audiences on BBC One later this year.”

Benjamin Green, Co-creator and Co-founder of Ranga Bee, says: “It was not exactly a tough ask for Romesh and myself to imagine what life would be like for a useless, conflict averse, procrastinating Beta male. It was trickier to work out what would happen if he was actually forced to change. We are delighted the BBC have allowed us to make a show for all those people that cannot turn an invitation down or tell a waiter they have the wrong order and especially for those poor souls that have to live with them.”

Jonathan Blyth, Director of Comedy for BBC Studios, says: “We are thrilled to be working with Romesh and Ben on this brilliant and contemporary family sitcom and its wonderful characters, which we know audiences around the world will fall in love with. I am delighted we can support Ranga Bee’s ambition to develop new content as fresh and exciting as Avoidance.”

BBC Studios will distribute Avoidance globally, as the first commission part of a new development and distribution agreement with Ranga Bee productions. Ranga Bee is an independent, award-winning comedy and entertainment production company founded by double Bafta-winning comedian Romesh Ranganathan and Emmy-winning Executive Producer and Director Benjamin Green.

Avoidance (6×30) is produced by Ranga Bee and CPL productions, a Red Arrow Studios company, for the BBC. Avoidance was commissioned by BBC Comedy. The Executive Producers for Ranga Bee are Michelle Farr-Scott, Romesh Ranganathan and Benjamin Green; for CPL Productions it is Danielle Lux and the Commissioning Editor for the BBC is Tanya Qureshi. The Producer is Arnold Widdowson and the Director is Benjamin Green.

Broadcast and further casting details will be confirmed in due course.