COMEDIAN Mario Rosenstock has revealed how negative equity prompted his move on to TV.
And the gamble has paid off with RTE already commissioning a second series of his comedy sketch show, along with a Christmas special.
Despite having only aired two episodes of 'The Mario Rosenstock Show', station chiefs informed the 42-year-old this weekend they want a second season from him as soon as possible after an average of 350,000 viewers tuned into both shows.
"I knew that the Gift Grub slot we did on Today FM had a fan base which could be tapped. What this proves is that we have managed to transfer that audience over to RTE TV," Rosenstock said.
The new commission for a second six-part series will be worth around €360,000 to Rosenstock's own company Blue Elf Productions, and Caboom director Damian Farrell's company, who will employ up to 50 cast and crew to produce the new series for RTE.
However, the mimic has had to defend a controversial sketch in his opening episode, which depicted an Irish family being evicted by a bank from their family home 'Big Brother' style.
The father of one revealed that he himself is locked in negative equity after buying a house in Blackrock at the height of the boom.
And he said his recent move to TV had been prompted by the same money worries.
"I'm paying a mortgage on a house worth half what I paid for it in 2009. People have asked online 'how could Mario make fun of people losing their homes' in that sketch. I wasn't, in fact I'm in the firing line when it comes to negative equity so I am not going to joke about that.
"This is just my way of dealing with it," said the comedian, whose wife Blathnaid is expecting their second child in February.
"RTE have been great. We have had zero interference from them. It was our lawyers, not theirs, who recommended dropping some sketches over legal concerns," he said.
But quite what RTE's Director of Programmes Steve Carson will make of Rosenstock's plans for a Christmas Special, is not yet known.
The funnyman plans to do the whole show 'Mrs Merton' style interviewing guests dressed up as Miriam O'Callaghan – the wife of the RTE boss.
'The Prime Time' presenter has herself praised Rosenstock's send-ups as "genuinely funny".