Stand-up comic says BBC and E4 have stolen his African dictator character

Mail Online | 7/23/2019 | Joe Middleton For Mailonline
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A stand-up comic has accused the BBC and E4 of 'stealing' his African dictator character for a new spoof talk show.

Bosses at E4 announced the pilot episode of its new show, called The Colonel Banjoko Show, starring Sliced star Samson Kayo as the deposed African dictator last week.

Show - BBC - Studios - Commissions - Channel

The show, filmed by BBC Studios, in one of its first commissions for a non-BBC channel, is set to be aired later this year.

But stand-up comic Benjamin Bello has now threatening legal action after claiming the character is a 'complete rip off' of his character President Obonjo, also a 'deposed African dictator'.

Character - Comedy - Clubs - UK - Decade

He says he has showcased the character in comedy clubs around the UK for the last decade - and even sent in videos of his live shows to the BBC in 2012 and 2014 when he entered the BBC New Comedy Awards competition.

Speaking this week, he said he was appalled at the new E4 show and demanded it be scrapped.

Comedy - Site - Chortle - 'E4 - BBC

He told comedy site Chortle: 'E4 and BBC Studios have stolen my act and created a TV pilot.

'I have been developing the character President Obonjo on the comedy circuit for nearly ten years.

'I - Personality - Dictator - Adrift - UK

'I have carefully crafted the comedic personality of an African dictator adrift in the UK and the similarities to the E4 pilot are deeply worrying.

'I am gutted by this latest development and I am going to fight this with all I have got.

Idea - Concept - Dictator - One - UK

'I created this idea, it is my concept and I am the real African dictator - the only one in the UK. This is stealing 10 years of work.'

He added: 'Folks this is war, if they think I am going to work this hard and someone will steal my act for a sitcom, they are having a laugh.


'I am taking professional advice.'

Speaking about his previous contact with the BBC,...
(Excerpt) Read more at: Mail Online
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