Little Britain takes comedy accolade

Little Britain scooped Ricky Gervais’ Extras to Best TV Comedy of 2005 at the 16th annual British Comedy Awards.

Little Britain scooped Ricky Gervais’ Extras to Best TV Comedy of 2005 at the 16th annual British Comedy Awards.

David Walliams and Matt Lucas’ hit BBC show won the prestigious award for the second year running last night.

Later, it was announced that Walliams, 34, and Lucas, 31, had also taken the first Ronnie Barker Writer of the Year Award.

While Gervais lost out in the Best Television Comedy Actor category, his female co-star Ashley Jensen walked away with two awards.

The Scottish actress, who plays Maggie in the show, won Best Television Comedy Actress and Best Comedy Newcomer.

Jensen beat comedy star Catherine “am I bovvered?” Tate and The Green Wing’s Tamsin Greig in the actress category.

Receiving her award for Best Newcomer, Jensen told the audience: “I’m a wee bit speechless and anyone who knows me knows that’s an accomplishment.”

She thanked Ricky and his comedy partner Stephen Merchant for giving her “the opportunity to play a brilliant part”.

She also thanked her boyfriend Terry and her mum and family “for laughing at me all my life”.

Wearing a Chinese-patterned wine coloured velvet dress, she told the press backstage: “I’m completely blown away by the whole thing. It’s a dream. I’m happy I won but the prize was getting my job so anything else is a big bonus.”

She added she shared some characteristics with her hapless screen character, saying: “I nearly walked off (the stage) the wrong way.”

But Jensen herself is set to become a huge success.

When her name was read out by Hollywood A-lister Samuel L Jackson, who appeared in a cameo role in Extras, he said: “This is going to make my agent so happy. He’s just signed her.”

The surprise winner of the Best Television Comedy Actor title – in which Gervais and the Little Britain creators were nominated – was Chris Langham, who stars in Help (BBC2) and The Thick Of It (BBC4).

Ant and Dec and Jonathan Ross lost out to Paul O’Grady for The Paul O’Grady Show (ITV1) in the award for Best Comedy Entertainment Personality.

ITV’s hit talent show The X Factor won Best Comedy Entertainment Programme, beating both Friday Night With Jonathan Ross and Ant And Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway.

Channel 4’s Shameless was named Best TV Comedy Drama in the awards presented by Jonathan Ross.

The Simpsons took the gong for Best International Comedy TV Show after bagging the same title last year.

As well as scooping an award in the Comedy Actor Category, BBC4’s The Thick Of It was named Best New TV Comedy of 2005.

Picking up the award, Armando Iannucci, producer and writer of The Thick Of It, joked: “Sorry Ricky, it’s over.”

He said backstage: “I wasn’t expecting this. I thought Extras would win. I was completely stunned. I deliberately didn’t prepare a speech.”

He joked: “I saw Ricky sucking a cigar, getting ready to go on stage. I’m sure he’s big enough to deal with the bitter blow.”

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