Karl Puschmann is an entertainment writer for the New Zealand Herald.

NZOA comedy funding includes new show from Taika Waititi and Jemaine Clement

Taika Waititi and Jemaine Clement
Taika Waititi and Jemaine Clement

Taika Waititi and Jemaine Clement will return to our television screens - and the shadows - next year thanks to NZ On Air.

The filmmaker and comic actor have just been awarded funding for Paranormal Event Response Unit, a brand new, six-part comedy series that will screen on TVNZ 2 in 2017.

The show is a spin-off from the pair's hugely funny, hit film What We Do In the Shadows, a mockumentary that came out in 2014 about a group of vampires flatting together in Wellington.

PERU will follow the movie's mock-reality format and follow two police officers, Karen and Mike, as they work to 'keep us safe from supernatural phenomena'.

"Comedy is serious business and notoriously hard to get right," NZ On Air Chief Executive Jane Wrightson said in a statement. "We are delighted that Jemaine Clement and Taika Waititi are bringing their talents to smaller screens."

Another all original comedy has also received NZOA funding. Only in Aotearoa, a skit-based comedy show, will screen on Māori Television next year.

Based on a web series of the same name, its sketches focus on the Māori perspective and finds the lols in 'what young people could be worried about on a very bad day'.

Along with these two all new shows the long-running comedy favourites Jono And Ben and 7 Days also received funding for their 2017 seasons.

Here's the funding details in full:

Jono And Ben 2017, 26 episodes (1hour), MediaWorks TV for TV3, $1,717,042

Paranormal Event Response Unit, 6 episodes (30mins), Two Canoes for TVNZ 2, $1,402,273

7 Days 2017, 32 episodes (30mins), MediaWorks TV for TV3, $1,056,000

Only In Aotearoa, 8 episodes (30mins), Kura Productions for Māori Television, $241,886

- NZ Herald

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