Press release time!
Monday, November 20, 2017 — ABC and Screen Australia in association with Create NSW are pleased to announce that filming is underway in Sydney on the new six-part family comedy/drama series Sando, from the team at Jungle.
Starring the much-loved Genevieve Morris (No Activity) as Sando (aka Victoria ‘Sando’ Sandringham) in her first TV series lead role, the ensemble cast includes Firass Dirani (House Husbands), Phil Lloyd (The Moodys) Rob Carlton (Paper Giants), Krew Boylan (Schapelle), Adele Vuko (of online comedy sensations Skitbox), Uli Latukefu and newcomer Dylan Hesp.
‘Sando’ (Genevieve Morris) is Australia’s queen of the discount furniture package deal. She’s built her empire on being a down-to-earth larrikin and is something of a national treasure – to all but her family. They banished her a decade ago when her one-night stand (and resulting pregnancy) by her daughter’s fiancé (Firass Dirani) was shockingly revealed at his wedding to her daughter (Krew Boylan). Now, after a health scare, her career on a precipice and her professional nemesis (Rob Carlton) primed to push her into the abyss, Sando is determined to rekindle the family relationship. She needs them, and in spite of their initial apprehension…and unbridled hatred…soon they’ll discover they might actually need her too.
Created and written by Phil Lloyd (The Moodys, Here Come the Habibs) and co-created by Charlie Garber, the series will be directed by Erin White (It’s a Date, Little Lunch) and the Van Vuuren Bros. (Bondi Hipsters, Soul Mates), and produced by Chloe Rickard (No Activity, Here Come the Habibs).
Sando will film in Sydney over the next six weeks and air on ABC next year.
Look, we know it’s the job of a press release to sell something that perhaps is a bit on the whiffy side, but calling Genevieve Morris “much-loved”? No slight on Ms Morris but in late 2017 with John Clarke gone we’d struggle to call anyone in Australian comedy “much-loved” aside from maybe Magda Szubanski and she’s barely done comedy since Kath & Kim.
Genevieve Morris, on the other hand, has a comedy career that largely involves five years on Comedy Inc, one of the worst sketch shows this country has ever produced. Then there’s her work on Wednesday Night Fever, a show about which the less said the better, and Live From Planet Earth, which was, to use an industry term, “shit”. Plus a lengthy run on City Homicide, which was probably as big a laugh-getter as any of the other shows mentioned here.
But clearly she’s been doing something right, because appearing in a run of shows like that would have killed a lesser comedian’s career stone dead. And hopefully whatever it is that she’s been doing can draw an audience to a show that looks like someone at the ABC realised that they had nothing to fill the “wacky lower-class family” slot now that Upper Middle Bogan and The Moodys were over and figured a show loosely based on a dim recollection of Ken Bruce would work as well as any.
Oh wait, the press release calls it a “comedy/drama” which these days isn’t even code for “unfunny comedy”. If you’re trying to sell a show to the nation and that’s the best pitch you’ve got, we’re all in a lot of trouble.