TV's Dawn French seeks talented young as Harry Hill aims high to impress aliens
Published 25/08/2016 | 18:46
A children's talent showcase hosted by Dawn French and a panel show presided over by Harry Hill as two teams are tasked with saving the planet from alien invasion are among the new programmes coming to ITV.
French will host Little Big Shots, which will have no winners, losers or prizes but will instead be a platform for children to show what they can do.
Based on a hit American format hosted by Steve Harvey, it takes place on a huge revolving stage.
French will interview the children on one side and they will display talents ranging from black belt karate to classical music, dancing, singing, spelling and cooking on the other.
French said: "Rarely have I relished the thought of doing a show as much as this.
"I love love love everything about it, especially the fact that I will get to witness the amazing talents of these remarkable little humans up close. It's going to be a privilege. Yay! Bring it on!"
Also hoping to entertain the masses will be comedian Harry Hill, who will return to ITV with a new series in 2017.
Harry Hill's Alien Fun Capsule tasks teams with finding anything that is fun or funny enough for Hill to place in a capsule that would convince aliens earthlings are worthy of saving.
Over a series of rounds, the two teams of two present Hill with their offerings before he decides what goes in.
Hill said: "It's great to be back on ITV with an all-new format that finally tackles the problem of an imminent and prolonged war with space aliens, by proving to them that us humans are really a lot of fun to hang out with!"
Saskia Schuster, ITV's comedy commissioning editor, added: "We're really excited to have Harry back on ITV, and we're confident that the human race will be safe in his hands with this brand new panel show packed with laughs, silliness and of course, fun."
Speaking at the Edinburgh international TV festival, Kevin Lygo, ITV's director of television, also announced a new sitcom from comedian Jack Dee, which will hit screens next year.
In a panel with broadcaster Kirsty Wark, Lygo was questioned about reports that ITV is trying to poach the BBC's Great British Bake Off to add to the channel's schedule.
Lygo was dismissive, replying: "I would prefer EastEnders."
On soaps that remain anchors for the broadcaster, Lygo was equally evasive.
Coronation Street will move from five to six episodes a week next year but Lygo would not say where in the schedule the extra episode would go.
He said: "I' m obviously not going to tell you, It will be in a marvellous place. It won't come until much later next year but one thing is for sure, I can't muck about with Coronation Street.
Lygo also stressed he would not be messing around with The X Factor, which returns to screens this weekend.
He said: "The X F actor is still a wonderful show and an enormous hit. When Britain's Got Talent and X Factor launched, people didn't think how long they would run for but they can run and run.
"It still gets eight or nine million viewers. I wish I had more problems like X Factor."