BritWeek Celebrates 50 Years of Britain in Los Angeles

Brits on TV

British television formats have been popular in the US since the sixties. Several successful TV shows in America have been based on British originals. These include “Sanford and Son,” “Three’s Company,” “All in the Family,” and more recently, “The Office.” Today reality TV show formats from the UK reign supreme in America, including “Who Wants to be a Millionaire,” “Dancing With the Stars,” and “American Idol.”

Many landmark British shows have been exported to the United States without being adapted for American audiences. These include numerous British comedies, from the zany “Monty Python’s Flying Circus” in the Seventies to Ricky Gervais’ original version of “The Office.” British crime dramas like “Prime Suspect,” historical epics, and costume dramas remain perennially popular.

Finally, innumerable Brits have been involved in purely American TV shows, often in the lead roles, from Angela Lansbury in “Murder She Wrote” and Jane Seymour in a variety of series, to Ian McShane in “Deadwood” and Hugh Laurie in “House” today. Everywhere in the TV industry, as in the movies, there are Brits behind the scenes, as producers and production experts.