BBC seeks comedies to tackle transgender issues

£5,000 bursary on offer for development of TV pilot with positive trans characters or themes

Submissions are now being accepted for a new BBC scheme aimed at finding “mainstream” comedy writers from within the transgender community.


The Trans Comedy Award, a collaboration between actor/comedian collective Trans Comedy and BBC Writersroom, the Corporation’s unit dedicated to finding and helping new writers, offers up to £5,000 for a new writer or writers to go towards making a TV pilot.

Scripts for sitcoms, comedy dramas and sketch shows can be submitted until 28 February.

The scheme, which is described as “an opportunity for the transgender community and members of the general public to portray transgender characters and the transgender experience in an affirming manner”, is open to any writer as long as the work submitted is not currently in development or under consideration for development, and has not previously been produced by any broadcaster or production company.

More details can be found on the BBC Writersroom site.

The BBC’s executive producer of comedy, Jon Plowman, who will act as one of the judges of the award, said it was a “no-brainer” to seek out great comic characters from the transgender community.


Transgender issues have been the subject of much media comment in the past week, after a torrent of complaints about a “transphobic” column in The Observer by polemicist Julie Burchill prompted the newspaper to withdraw the article and apologise to its readers.