Nic Wright

Philomena Cunk to front one-off show

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Philomena Cunk is to front a one-off show about Shakespeare.

Cunk, a dim-witted and oblivious broadcaster played by Diane Morgan, first appeared on Charlie Brooker’s Weekly Wipe.

Her regular segments, entitled Moments of Wonder, saw her examine subjects such as time, money and climate change in the style of po-faced modern factual programmes.

The half-hour guide to Shakespeare’s life and work is part of the BBC’s season of programmes to mark the 400th anniversary of his death, and will be executive-produced by Brooker and his House of Tomorrow production company.

The BBC said: “Unrivaled wordsmith. Unequaled genius. Scholar of the Human Condition. Philomena Cunk is the ideal candidate to give the BBC Two audience a comprehensive guide to William Shakespeare.

“A regular contributor to Charlie Brooker’s Weekly Wipe, Philomena has proven herself a shrewd interviewer, an insightful critic, and a voice of wisdom for our troubled times. She’ll bring all of these considerable talents to bear as she authors a documentary about the Bard, across 30 factually accurate minutes.”

Other programmes planned for the celebration include Ben Elton’s period sitcom Upstart Crow, which will star David Mitchell as Shakespeare. The comedy will also star Liza Tarbuck as Anne Hathaway, Harry Enfield as Shakepeare’s father, Rob Rouse, Gemma Whelan, Tim Downie as Marlowe and Mark Heap.