"Terrestrial TV in Ireland is dead," says PJ Gallagher, star of Naked Camera and The Young Offenders
PJ Gallagher burst into the public eye with the hit RTE comedy series Naked Camera.
A lesser known fact is that before his big break he'd been working the comedy circuit for 10 years, slogging it out and making a name for himself on RTÉ's hidden camera show Naked Camera.
On this week's episode of The Capital B, the comic from Dublin told presenter Nick Webb about the struggles he's faced making it in Ireland's funniest business, and how Naked Camera was one big accident.
"I'd given myself ten years of stand-up and I was making a living, but not a great living; I stopped booking gigs and decided to go away on a motorbike gig," revealed Gallagher.
"I got a phone call from Liam McGrath, the director of Naked Camera, right before I left and he said 'would you come and try out for this new show?'
"I said 'no, I'm finished, I'm going away.'
"I went away for a couple of months.... I rang him when I got back and said 'I don't suppose you're still looking for someone?'... they took me in and my first audition tape ended up being the very first sketch they used. After years of flogging away, I became an overnight success."
After Naked Camera, the work came thick and fast, and this past year PJ took to the big screen for his first foray into feature films.
He starred in The Young Offenders which, after receiving rave reviews, has now been commissioned for a TV series for the BBC in association with RTE.
"It's harder now, back in the day if you could get on TV you could go on tour... Naked Camera was probably the last era of big TV audiences but there's nobody watching tv anymore, terrestrial television is dead," he insists.
"What we've just been commissioned to make... if that was on ten years ago it would straight away be ten times bigger than what it's going to be, there's no way around it."
You can listen to the full interview with PJ at 6.12 in the link below.
The Capital B is available every Monday morning from 7am; listeners can tune in on Soundcloud and can also download and subscribe to the podcast on iTunes and other podcast providers.
Also on the show this week: Aidan Bishop of The International talks us through the dry summer months of comedy, and venture capitalist Brian Caulfield and film producer Rebecca O'Flanagan join us on the panel.