Sir Ian McKellen to Return in Critically Acclaimed Comedy VICIOUS on PBS

PBS and Shine International announced today that the second season of ITV's acclaimed British sitcom VICIOUS will be coming to PBS in 2015, kicking-off a star-studded summer lineup of British programming on the U.S. network.

Following a re-commission by UK broadcaster ITV, VICIOUS will return with Freddie (Sir Ian McKellen) and Stuart (Sir Derek Jacobi) delivering more biting remarks, snide comments and cruel asides. Joined by friends Violet (Frances de la Tour), Ash (Iwan Rheon), Penelope (Marcia Warren), Mason (Philip Voss) and a host of surprising guest characters, the boys embark on another season of humorous mishaps, misunderstandings, hideous break-ups and heart-warming make-ups. The six part series will air first on ITV in the UK, with the PBS transmission following in summer 2015.

"PBS and our member stations are excited to bring VICIOUS back to our summer lineup and watch the hilarious adventures of Freddie and Stuart unfold for a second season," said Beth Hoppe, Chief Programming Executive and General Manager, General Audience Programming, PBS. "Season 1 received such a wonderful response from our viewers, and we are delighted to be working with our Shine International partners to give Season 2 a home on PBS."

Gary Janetti ("Will & Grace", "Family Guy") is the Creator, Showrunner, and Executive Producer of VICIOUS, which is also produced by Gary Reich ("How Not To Live Your Life" and "Three Non Blondes"), and is directed by Ed Bye ("Absolutely Fabulous," "Home Again"). VICIOUS is a Brown Eyed Boy in association with Kudos and Nickelby Inc. production.

"It was such a joy to see U.S. viewers welcome Season 1 of VICIOUS into their homes last summer, and we're looking forward to continuing the fun next year," said Janetti. "Fans of the show can expect another round of outrageous antics, along with a few surprises, that are sure to make the second season as memorable as the first."

VICIOUS made its U.S. debut in June 2014 to much critical acclaim, with the New York Times calling it "convulsingly funny," the New York Daily News marking it "a breath of fresh television air" and Entertainment Weekly describing it as "bitingly funny."

Shine International represent VICIOUS, holding the international distribution rights.

VICIOUS Season 2 full episodes will be available for viewing on the PBS Video Portal for 30 days after each national broadcast.

About PBS

PBS, with its over 350 member stations, offers all Americans the opportunity to explore new ideas and new worlds through television and online content. Each month, PBS reaches nearly 109 million people through television and over 28 million people online, inviting them to experience the worlds of science, history, nature and public affairs; to hear diverse viewpoints; and to take front row seats to world-class drama and performances. PBS' broad array of programs has been consistently honored by the industry's most coveted award competitions. Teachers of children from pre-K through 12th grade turn to PBS for digital content and services that help bring classroom lessons to life. PBS' premier children's TV programming and its website, pbskids.org, are parents' and teachers' most trusted partners in inspiring and nurturing CURIOSITY and love of learning in children. More information about PBS is available at www.pbs.org, one of the leading dot-org websites on the Internet, or by following PBS on Twitter, Facebook or through our apps for mobile devices.

About Shine International

Shine international, the international sales and distribution division of Shine Group, is one of the world's leading independent distributors of content with a catalogue of over 4,500 hours of high quality scripted and unscripted programming from both third party producers and Shine Group's collection of production companies. These include the award-winning UK based Kudos (scripted), Dragonfly (factual), Princess Productions (entertainment and multi-genre), Shine TV (factual and factual entertainment) and Lovely Day and Brown Eyed Boy (scripted); eponymous established production businesses Shine America, Shine Australia, Shine France, Shine Germany and Shine Iberia alongside Shine Nordics (formerly Metronome Film & Television), the Nordic region's largest production group. Shine International specialises in the distribution of both finished programming and is a leader in the licensing of format rights including MasterChef (now produced in over 50 territories), THE BIGGEST LOSER and One Born Every Minute, and has been voted number one worldwide TV distributor by its peers in the Broadcast Magazine Distributors Survey for two consecutive years, 2013 and 2014 and awarded Best International Programme Sales for BROADCHURCH in 2014.

About ITV

ITV, the commissioning broadcaster of Vicious, is the largest commercial television network in the UK. ITV's broadcasting business is made up of ITV, the largest commercial channel in the country, and the UK's leading portfolio of digital channels - ITV2, ITV3, ITV4, CITV, ITV Encore, and ITVBe. Annually ITV invests around 1 billion in content for its broadcast channels and ITV.com. ITV is the home of high quality, popular television from the biggest entertainment events, to original drama and comedies, soaps, sport, factual series and independent news, both national, and regional.

About Brown Eyed Boy

Brown Eyed Boy opened its doors on May 27th 2002. The company was set up by maverick producer Gary Reich after he left the BBC and Chrysalis Entertainment where he had been a comedy executive for a number of years. Their aim is to make innovative mainstream shows that bring together surprising established and breaking talent both on and off screen, drawn from a global playing field. They pride ourselves on their sense of mischief. Brown Eyed Boy is responsible for multiple award winning returning series for BBC, ITV and Channel 4. Gary was extremely proud when Brown Eyed Boy joined the Shine Group in June 2010 and to work closely with his friends at Kudos.

Photo: PBS/VICIOUS

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