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Romesh Ranganathan to write and star in new BBC One comedy, Avoidance

The six-part series is about a man with severe conflict avoidance issues, forced to change for the sake of his son.

Romesh Ranganathan stars in this warm and bittersweet comedy series which has been written and created with Benjamin Green, who also directs the series.

Romesh stars as Jonathan, whose life revolves around his nine-year-old son Spencer, and he’s always deferred the big and small decisions to his partner Claire, played by 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, played by Mandeep Dhillon and her wife Courtney, played by 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?

Speaking about Avoidance, Romesh Ranganathan said "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?"

BBC's Commissioning Editor of Comedy, Tanya Qureshi, said "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."

To which Benjamin Green, Co-creator and Co-founder of Ranga Bee, added "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."

And BBC Studios' Director of Comedy, Jonathan Blyth, said "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."

Produced by Ranga Bee and CPL Productions, a Red Arrow Studios company, part of BBC Studios for the BBC, Avoidance will be distributed globally, as the first commission part of a new development and distribution agreement.

Executive Producers will be Michelle Farr-Scott, Romesh Ranganathan and Benjamin Green for Ranga Bee and Danielle Lux for CPL Productions with Arnold Widdowson producing and Benjamin Green directing.

Avoidance will air later this year on BBC One


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