From Spinal Tap to The Office (both in its British and American incarnations), the mockumentary has proved to be a great format for comedy.
It definitely worked for the sitcom People Just Do Nothing, which followed the antics of MC Grindah, DJ Beats and their mates, who run pirate radio station Kurupt FM, broadcasting UK garage and drum and bass music from Brentford in West London, and claiming to have “over 100 listeners”.
The series chronicled the lads’ ups and downs, particularly their tangled personal lives with other halves Miche and Roche, leaving viewers in stitches with one breath, and aghast in the next as the series evolved.
So far, so meh, you might think, especially if the grime music scene ain’t your bag, but bear with us. There was something incredibly special about People Just Do Nothing, and you really don’t need to know anything about the music at its heart to enjoy it. It actually began as an online series of mostly improvised YouTube webisodes, and among the audience was producer Jon Petrie, who offered to try to get the show a TV pilot.
It was duly broadcast on the BBC iPlayer in 2012, and an initial series was swiftly commissioned, followed by another, and another…
Creators Allan Mustafa, Steve Stamp, Asim Chaudhry and Hugo Chegwin (yes he is Keith’s nephew) had arrived, and they would put their stamp on a total of five series before the curtain came down in 2018.
The tight-knit quartet, who knew each other inside out and long before the show won BAFTA and Royal Television Society awards, brought a crackling energy to the screen, creating characters who may not always have been 100% likeable (we’re looking at you MC), but were always authentic and true to themselves.
If that wasn’t enough of a reason to love it, the show also provided a platform for the wickedly talented Lily Brazier, who plays Miche. But if you think the gang had gone gently into that good night, you’d be wrong. The Kurupt FM crew are preparing to release their first feature film: People Just Do Nothing: Big in Japan, and in this documentary are sharing their story so far.
As well as the main cast, executive producer Ash Atalla, producer Jon Petrie and director Jack Clough, as well as superfans Clara Amfo, Martin Freeman and Dizzee Rascal, plus Kurupt FM collaborator Craig David, will also share their favourite memories from the series and offer their insights into what made it such a success.
Commissioning editor Ben Caudell, said: “It’s the ultimate rags to riches story: the journey that the PJDN gang made from online amateurs to full-fledged professional movie idols is an incredible one and a fascinating insight into how doing your own thing can build to comedy superstardom. It’s a thoroughly entertaining ride – if you thought documentaries were all about unsolved murders and poisoned fish, think again, here’s a doc you can actually laugh at.”
A message from the Editor:
Thank you for reading this story on our website. While I have your attention, I also have an important request to make of you.
In order for us to continue to provide high quality and trusted local news on this free-to-read site, I am asking you to also please purchase a copy of our newspaper whenever you are able to do so.
Our journalists are highly trained and our content is independently regulated by IPSO to some of the most rigorous standards in the world. But being your eyes and ears comes at a price. So we need your support more than ever to buy our newspapers during this crisis.
With the coronavirus lockdown having a major impact on many of our local valued advertisers - and consequently the advertising that we receive - we are more reliant than ever on you helping us to provide you with news and information by buying a copy of our newspaper when you can safely.
You can also enjoy unlimited access to the best news from across Northern Ireland and the UK by subscribing to newsletter.co.uk
With a digital subscription, you can read more than five articles, see fewer ads, enjoy faster load times, and get access to exclusive newsletters and content. Visit https://www.newsletter.co.uk/subscriptions now to sign up.