MIPTV: Paul Abbott working on darkly comic cop drama, expects more series of Shameless.

Writer and producer Paul Abbott is confident hit series Shameless has a future on Channel 4. Speaking to Screen during MIPTV, he said that he and Channel 4 chief creative officer Jay Hunt were on the same page when it came to future series. “I’m now confident that it has longevity. Jay is the one pushing it now. That’s not just because I’m back on board, it’s because the stories are right. I’ve written some of them but they have been synthesized by four or five writers. But you want other writers on board, that’s the nature of team writing.”

Abbott is currently working on series ten of the hit show.

With a number of Channel 4’s scripted shows hitting the can this year, including popular series Skins and E4 originations such as structured reality show Desperate Scousewives, there had been speculation that Shameless could be in jeopardy.

During a MIP panel session this morning, Abbott was asked if there was an end point to the series, which also has a hit US remake starring William H Macy: “There is a sad self-inflicted inevitability about series and people ask ‘has it worn itself out’ but not if we find better stories elsewhere, I could keep it going for 40 years,” he said.

Abbott told the morning session that he is working on a new idea for a TV cop series called No Offence. He said, “It’s a dark, comic cop drama. Not a spoof. But it isn’t a conventional cop drama.”

He referenced the female characters from BBC comedy Pulling as touchstones but also said there were elements reminiscent of long-running UK TV show The Bill. He exemplified No Offence’s tone by relaying a scenario from the show in which a police detective seeks hypnotherapy to cure her bad habit of laughing when breaking bad news to grieving families.

“We haven’t got a thing on paper but in the past three months it has been coming together. There are many layers to it. I’m writing it in English. It could be either a US or UK production,” Abbott later told Screen.

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