Emily Mortimer to Write and Star in 'Doll & Em' for Sky Living

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LONDON – A raft of fresh commissions for UK satellite operator BSkyB channel Sky Living includes Doll & Em, a comedy created by and starring Emily Mortimer and her real-life best friend Dolly Wells.

The show is part of the pay-TV giant's push to commission programming to sit alongside the channel's US acquisitions, which include Chicago Fire, Love Machine and the NBC co-commissioned Dracula.

Doll & Em is an original commission and is billed as an "intimate, funny portrait of female friendship" set against the backdrop of Los Angeles.

It also promises a "number of surprise high-profile celebrity cameos."

Also commissioned for Sky Living is Trying Again, an original comedy series written and co-created by Emmy and Oscar nominated scribe Simon Blackwell (Veep, The Thick of It, In the Loop, Peep Show) and stand-up comedian and actor Chris Addison (The Thick Of it, In The Loop).

It is billed as a sitcom about what happens after the affair and is casting now for a summer production shoot.

Also commissioned is Life Stages, Sky Living’s first foray into long-form programming, with three series confirmed for the strand.

Becoming Mum and Dad, Newlyweds and She’s Having a Baby will chart the varying stages throughout our lives.

The shows are among fresh commissions for Sky Living led by channel director Antonia Hurford-Jones, appointed in September last year.

The commissions are supported by Sky’s commitment to invest $951 million (£600 million) a year in home-grown programming by 2014, an increase of 50 percent over three years.

Hurford-Jones noted the operator's pleasure in luring "big terrestrial talent" to the satellite operator's channel.

Sky Living previously focused on female viewers, but it has recently expanded its offers to reach a broader audience.

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