Keith first saw the light of day in Bo’ Selecta! along with a host of other characters from Leigh’s unique imagination. He’s now the star of the ITV2 hit Celebrity Juice as well as series including Coming in America, Shopping with Keith Lemon, and with Paddy McGuinness, The Keith and Paddy Picture Show.
Leigh Francis is a comedian and performer who, although perhaps not that well known in his own right, is the creator of some of the most popular, and outrageous cult comic characters around including Keith Lemon, Avid Merrion, The Bear and his unique takes on celebrities including Mel B, and Craig David. However it is as Keith, star of a whole host of ITV2 shows, that he has become best known.
Starting out as a standup comedian, Leigh had an early TV break as Bobby Stark, a man delivering tips on how to be a lethario with mixed success. He then appeared on Channel 4’s Popworld as paparazzo Barry Gibson. It was these two characters that persuaded Channel 4 to commission a series based around them called Bo' Selecta! The series centred around Leigh’s eccesntic impressions of celebrities, usually based around ludicrous rubber masks, catchphrases and broad Yorkshire accents (whether said celebrity was from Yorkshire or not). The show became a huge cult success and the catchphrases were heard in pubs, offices and student unions across the country.
After the success of Bo' Selecta! Leigh took one of the show’s characters, Keith Lemon to a series of his own on ITV2. Keith Lemon's Very Brilliant World Tour was another success and lead to the creation of the anarchic panel show Celebrity Juice which has become the channel’s biggest show. In turn Celebrity Juice has spawned The Bang Tidy Show, Coming in America, Shopping with Keith Lemon, and a comedy partnership with Paddy McGuinness which saw the two create film parody series The Keith and Paddy Picture Show, as well as starring in Keith Lemon: The Film.
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