Fantasy Football League to return on Sky with new hosts Matt Lucas and Elis James

Tuesday 17 May 2022

After 18 years off our screens, Sky are bringing back Fantasy Football League, the iconic comedy football show blending football fanaticism with celebrity chat. Originally fronted by the show’s creators, David Baddiel and Frank Skinner, the duo will be passing the ball to brand new hosts, Matt Lucas and Elis James. Fantasy Football League will be returning to our screens this autumn for a new 16-episode series on Sky Max and NOW.

Matt Lucas says: “I loved watching Fantasy Football League with Frank, David and Statto and am chuffed to bits to be a part of this new incarnation. I now make a living eating cake and watching football. I must be the luckiest man in the world. I also get to share the sofa with Elis, who is not only hilarious but the biggest football geek I’ve ever met. See you next season.”

Elis James says: “I couldn’t be more delighted to be bringing back Fantasy Football League, although Matt’s Arsenal obsession means writing meetings are often derailed by long, wistful chats about Ray Parlour. To be presenting a show I used to tape off the telly is a dream come true. The ambition is to make a show that’s as loved as the original, and fill it with references to Swansea City without making it unwatchable.”

Running from 1994 to 2004, saw celebrity guests competing against each other as managers in a ‘fantasy league’ as well as chatting all things football. Guests on the show included: Bob Mortimer, Jo Brand, Prince Naseem, Damon Albarn, Ant & Dec, Jimmy Greaves, Sean Bean, Noel Gallagher, Brigitte Nielsen, Lennox Lewis, George Best, Karren Brady, Melvyn Bragg, Roy Hattersley, Caroline Aherne, Peter Cook, Pelé Kathy Burke, Des Lynam and John Lydon. The show also included the legendary regular feature, Phoenix From The Flames, where a retired star footballer recreated one of their most memorable moments in football.

The series was commissioned by Phil Edgar-Jones, Director of Sky Arts and Entertainment at Sky for Zai Bennett, Managing Director of Content at Sky. Produced by Avalon (Taskmaster, Starstruck, The Russell Howard Hour, Last Week Tonight with John Oliver), Fantasy Football League will be Series Produced by Spencer Millman (Fantasy Football League, TV Burp, The Inbetweeners 2) and the Series Director is Peter Orton (Fantasy Football League, TV Burp, The Russell Howard Hour).

About Sky

Sky is Europe’s leading media and entertainment company and is proud to be part of Comcast Corporation, a global media and technology company that connects people to moments that matter. Across six countries, Sky connects 23 million customers to the best entertainment, sports, news, arts and to our own award-winning original content. 

Following the launch of Sky Glass, we now offer customers our strongest ever line-up of products and services. As well as the new streaming TV with Sky inside and everything integrated, customers can enjoy the award-winning Sky Q with all your favourite channels and apps in one place, and with Sky Go you can now access an even better experience on your devices. Sky TV has new channels, new shows and new deals with Peacock, Paramount+ and more. Sky Mobile was voted Best Pay Monthly and Best Value Pay Monthly network by Uswitch, and with Sky Broadband we’re offering our fastest speeds yet. 

Building on the success of Sky Originals like Chernobyl, Gangs of London and Brassic, we are doubling our investment in original content by 2024 through Sky Studios. Our new TV and movie studio, Sky Studios Elstree, is expected to create over 2,000 new jobs and generate an additional £3 billion of production investment in the UK over the first five years alone. Sky News provides impartial and trustworthy journalism for free; Sky Arts is the UKs only dedicated free-to-air arts channel making the arts accessible for everyone and Sky Sports, our leading sports broadcasting service, brings customers some of the biggest and best global sporting events from the Premier League to Formula 1 and everything in-between. Sky Cinema is the home of Sky Original films with brand new films launching every month alongside an unrivalled range of the latest cinema releases and on demand library. 

We believe that we can be a force for good in the communities in which we operate. We’re committed to being Europe’s first net zero carbon entertainment company by 2030 and we’re proud to be a Principal Partner and Media Partner of COP26 – the UN Climate Change Conference. We take pride in our approach to diversity and inclusion: we’ve been recognised by The Times and Stonewall for our commitment to diversity, and we’ve set ambitious 2025 targets to continue to increase diversity and representation. We’re also committed to investing £30million across our markets over the next three years to improve our approach to diversity and inclusion, and to tackle racial injustice. 

About NOW 

NOW is the home of brilliant entertainment. We’re one of the UK’s leading streaming services with critically acclaimed shows, new and exclusive movies, unmissable sport and epic kids TV – all with no contract. Join in with an Entertainment, Cinema, Sports, or hayu Membership to stream instantly across TV, mobile, desktop and over 60 other devices. Watch on the go and even offline with our app by downloading shows and movies. 

Entertainment Members can enjoy critically acclaimed dramas, documentaries and comedies, Emmy award-winning shows, the best of HBO and exclusive Sky Originals. Cinema Members can discover over 1000 brilliant movies, from the latest blockbusters and classic favourites and a new premiere every day. Sports Members cheer on unmissable Premier League, international cricket, F1, golf and more – all live, across 11 Sky Sports channels. 

Plus, members can enhance their experience with NOW Boost – that’s full 1080p HD, Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound and streaming on up to 3 devices at once, ad-free in VOD. 

For super-fast broadband, members can enjoy a contract-free connection with a NOW Brilliant Broadband, Fab Fibre or Super Fibre Membership. 

Learn more: nowtv.com
See what’s on offer: nowtv.com/offers
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About Avalon

Avalon is a multi-award-winning talent management, television production and live promotion group with offices in London, Los Angeles and New York. Avalon, Artist Rights Group (ARG) and The Agency represent a prolific roster of artists including comedians, actors, presenters, writers and directors.

Avalon’s numerous ground-breaking returning television shows currently in production include: Not Going Out (BBC), the UK’s longest running sitcom on air; Taskmaster (Channel 4), the BAFTA-winning hit entertainment format showing in 100 countries; multi Emmy-winner, Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO); The Russell Howard Hour (Sky), the network’s most successful entertainment show launch since 2010; Starstruck, a new sitcom from the 2018 Edinburgh Comedy Award winner Rose Matafeo (HBO Max/BBC); Flatbush Misdemeanours (Showtime), a new comedy series created by and starring Dan Perlman and Kevin Iso; Breeders, a sitcom starring Martin Freeman and Daisy Haggard (FX/Sky); upcoming new series The Chris & Rosie Ramsey Show (BBC); and multiple comedy specials for Amazon Prime Video, HBO Max and Netflix.

Other landmark Avalon shows include BAFTA winning and multi Emmy nominated Catastrophe (Amazon Prime Video/Channel 4), Fantasy Football League (BBC/ITV), multi BAFTA-winning TV Burp (ITV), and Workaholics (Comedy Central USA). Avalon also distributes its catalogue of programmes to over 150 countries worldwide. Avalon has produced many globally successful podcasts and is at the top of the UK iTunes chart with the multi-award-winning Shagged.Married.Annoyed.

As a leading promoter of live comedy, Avalon produced Newman and Baddiel: Live at Wembley, the UK’s first arena comedy show; Jerry Springer: The Opera, the first West End show to win all four UK ‘Best New Musical’ awards; and has continued to produce and promote live shows globally, as well as promoting more winners and nominees of the prestigious Edinburgh Comedy Award than any other company.

For Avalon news visit: www.avalonuk.com/press or follow @avalonent

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