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In a bid to encourage broadcasters to take the plunge and commission a Jewish comedy show for British TV, Jewish writing team Leslie Bunder and Caroline Westbrook have started JewishComedy.co.uk (www.jewishcomedy.co.uk).
The website will be updated on a regular basis with new material and ideas appearing and will act as a springboard to developing projects for TV as well as stage. Initially based on Bunder and Westbrook's writing, the site is set to develop into streaming work in progress audio and video material of not just their material but also of others.
"While there is a richness in Jewish creativity on the small screen, to date we have yet to see a Jewish TV series commissioned or even make it to pilot stage," said Bunder, who is also editor of the popular Jewish lifestyle and interest website SomethingJewish (www.somethingjewish.co.uk) and co-presenter of London's weekly SomethingJewish Show broadcast on Resonance 104.4fm.
"We think the only way to make things happen is to start doing them and with the website, this is the first part of our plan to try and address the situation. We have come across many writers and performers who want to do Jewish material but without anyone commissioning Jewish material, it is hard for them to develop it. We hope that through the site interesting and creative Jewish material will appear."
Bunder acknowledges that as a work in progress, the material will sometimes be unpolished. "But it is all about starting something," he adds.
"One piece of material which we think will be of interest will be Don't Mention The J Word. It is a somewhat autobiographical script based on one man's attempt at trying to get a Jewish comedy series on TV and some of the issues he faces," Bunder said. "Of course having had first hand experience of trying to get something commissioned, I thought I would put this knowledge and rejection to good use and share with others."
For more information: www.jewishcomedy.co.uk
Leslie Bunder: 07976 220273
Published on: 12:00AM on 5th January 2004