Genie in the House
|Genie in the House|
|Also known as||You Wish (original pilot)|
|Created by||Phil Ox
|Directed by||Phil Ox & Steven Bawol|
Victoria Gay (season 1)
|Theme music composer||Jean de Aguiar and Kevin Eldon|
|Opening theme||There's a Genie in the House|
|Ending theme||There's a Genie in the House [instrumental]|
|Composer(s)||Jean de Aguiar and Kevin Eldon|
|Country of origin||UK|
|Original language(s)||English (In the show)|
|No. of series||4|
|No. of episodes||78 (74 regular episodes, 2 TV movies, 2 TV specials) (List of episodes)|
|Running time||28 minutes|
|Production company(s)||Moi j'aime la television S.A|
|Distributor||Moi j'aime la television S.A|
|Original channel||Nickelodeon UK
Canal J (France)
|Original run||29 May 2006 – 29 August 2009|
Genie in the House is a British sitcom broadcast on Nickelodeon UK about a widowed father (Philip) with two teenage daughters (Emma and Sophie) who find a dusty old golden lamp while exploring the loft of their new home. A quick rub of the lamp releases Adil, a trainee genie from Balamkadaar who has been confined to life in the lamp for 1000 years. Philip has banned any use of magic in the house, yet the girls and Adil the Genie find ways to get themselves into trouble using Adil's wish granting powers. The mother is never mentioned, except on Adil's birthday when Philip mentions being a widower. As of March 2012, Genie in the House is now airing on the Starz Kids & Family cable network.
The show is based on an original idea — the collective work of Phil Ox (a French producer and Director), Steven Bawol (an American director who said he wanted to make England the 'New America'), Isabelle Dubernet and Eric Führer — and is a French/English co-production, produced in English by French company Moi j'aime la television. At one point, You Wish! was considered as a working title, and was used for the pilot show, but it was discovered that there had been an American sitcom, You Wish, with the same name, so Genie in the House was chosen instead.
The show's theme song was written especially for the show, with music by Jean de Aguiar and lyrics by Kevin Eldon. It is sung by Vicky Longley and Katie Sheridan, the actresses who play Emma and Sophie in the show.
Series 1 was recorded at Elstree Film and Television Studios in Borehamwood, Hertfordshire and was first aired on 29 May 2006. It is currently being repeated on Nickelodeon in the UK. Series 2 started recording at the BBC Elstree Centre in Borehamwood on 29 June 2007, for broadcast in October 2007. The show has been sold, sometimes in dubbed form, to Turkey, France, Belgium, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Russia, Ukraine, India, The Netherlands and Germany. Filming for the third and final series took place at Twickenham Film Studios, London and began in June 2008 ending with a 3 part story 'The Legend of The Dragon', filmed on location in Paris and the surrounding countryside.
To begin with, the episodes were not highly popular, and instead the show was treated as a regular program. The first episode, "The Clones", featured a small amount of sound effects, background music and laugh track, and dialogue was spoken less clearly. Though the characters' facial expressions rarely varied, the special effects were admired (such as the clones of Sophie and Emma, (both as themselves and dressed as clowns), the large gaping hole in the Norton's kitchen wall, and the green monster that is accidentally conjured. The character Caroline was first introduced in "Cave Dad", and was highly disliked by viewers and criticised for her jumpy speech and "damp, housewife-like" posture. On genieinthehouse.com, she was voted as the worst character in the show, and is now thought of as a "filler" character. However, as episodes continued, the plots became more comedic, and viewers increased by the week. The episode "Puppy Love" was popular, and soon Genie in the House was accepted as decent.
Rise in popularity
As episodes went on, Genie in the House was treated as worth watching. The episode "Girl Band" (written by Award-Winning Writer and Comedian Bennett Arron) was the highest-rated episode, and voted the greatest of season one on www.genieinthehouse.com. Episodes after became more ambitious in audio, special effects and sets, rather than the constant use of the living room and kitchen, frequent Egyptian musical scores and four different background laughs. "Cuckoo" was very high-rated, and beyond that episode, almost every one was very popular.
From the episode "Maxed Out", the first episode of the second half of Season One which aired 3 June 2007, Genie In The House became extremely popular and was soon named the No. 1 comedy in the United Kingdom on Nickelodeon, surpassing shows such as Drake and Josh and Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide. The episodes onwards, such as "Game On", "For Your Spies Only" and "Emma TV", featured far more complex sets (S.O.P.H.I.E. Base, Emma TV Studio, castle, etc.) than simple rooms, more complex musical scores, highly expensive special effects, such as the futuristic background in "No Time Like the Future", the animated Tyrannosaurus rex at the end, the DVD-control effects in "Control Freak", and more. These episodes are still among the most popular.
Series Two began on 5 November 2007, which so happened to be Guy Fawkes Night in the United Kingdom. "The Blob" skyrocketed to the top, surpassing the SpongeBob SquarePants episode "Boat Smarts/Good Ol' Whatshisname" ratings-wise. The next four episodes, "I feel Like Singing", "Return of Abdab", "Genie Swap" and "Soap Opera" were just as popular, and though "Genie Swap" was quite criticised, Series Two was blooming well. The following week saw a decline. "Eau de Sophie" which had a much smaller amount of views, has been quite low-rated. The next scheduled episode, "Super Max" was postponed for another two weeks. In its place, "Genie Swap" was instead broadcast. A very low amount of viewers tuned in after the postponement was decided. However, luckily, the episode "Juice Wars" which aired the next day rose the ratings once more, featuring an entirely new set (The Juice Bar) and new character Owen. The lovable character Fuzzy very much satisfied fans. A new character Clive was introduced as Sophie's love interest in this series. The final two, "My Chair Lady" and "Junior Genie" rose even higher. "Super Max" eventually aired at the end of the following week. The rest of series 2 was aired in April 2007. Series 3 was filmed between the end of June and the end of Sept 2008 at Twickenham Film Studios in south west London. This was to be the final series of 26 episodes. The character Clive featured more in this series as Sophie's continued love interest. Advances in the special effects meant this series contained some ambitious episodes. Giant children "Pony Tale", Pirates "Yo Ho Adil", High School Musical tribute "Fame School", Star Wars Tributes "Max Actor", a couple of two part episodes and the series was ended with a three part special "Legend of the Dragon" that saw the cast and crew finally out of the studio and onto the streets of Paris with flying Dragons and Gargoyles and real locations. This Story saw the TV series brought to an end after 72 episodes. The first batch of episodes for series 3 were aired in November 2008 with the remaining episodes held back to April and May 2009 including the now feature length "Legend of the Dragon", written by Bennett Arron.
Series End and feature film trilogy
In 2009, after the end of the final series, it was decided that there would be no more TV episodes but the production company made plans for a Genie in the House feature film trilogy, the first of which was scheduled for shooting in the late summer 2010. Finance became a major issue but production companies in Spain and Germany expressed interest in financing a 3D version of a single film story with shooting being rumoured to start in summer 2012.
Adil the Genie
Adil was born in the fourth century in the suburbs of the city of Balamkadaar. He has the outward appearance of being 15 years old, but has actually lived for 1500 years. His father was a genie (to be found today in a bottle of pop at the bottom of the Nile) and his mother was a teacher of the Dance of the Seven Veils. Like all children, Adil went to school, only his was a Genie School, the world famous School for Genie Arts and Sciences. Adil was not a perfect student. One day he climbed into a lamp for a dare, strictly forbidden for first year students, and got himself stuck. Unfortunately the forty thieves chose that very night to burgle the school and steal the lamp. Forgotten for a hundred years or so in Ali Baba's cave, the lamp eventually passed from hand to hand, before ending up in the attic of the Norton family's new home.
Adil is proud to be a genie and is always ready to serve his new master and mistresses. But he does have a problem. Unfortunately, he often skipped his classes and never finished the academic year. Because of this, he has not quite got the hang of magic, and does not always — actually, almost never — get things right, and most wishes are granted more or less 'approximately'.
Adil is played by Jordan Metcalfe. It's a role very different from his previous most notable television work, as Timon in Maddigan's Quest, and stage work, the title role in Neil Bartlett's acclaimed stage production of Oliver Twist. Jordan seems to be on-screen most of the time, Adil is always at the root of whatever is going on, and his costume (red pantaloons, red waistcoat and red turban) rarely changes.
Philip has his hands full. Though he is a talented and successful designer, he constantly has to meet the deadlines set by his boss, Max, as well as bringing up two teenage girls. Add an over-eager genie to the mix and it's no wonder that Philip sometimes feels a little bit put upon. However, given the chaos of living with world's worst genie, Philip seems to be coping rather well.
Adil is categorically forbidden to grant Emma and Sophie wishes for two reasons:
- It's a very bad habit to get what you want simply by clicking your fingers.
- If anyone finds out there is a genie in the house, life could become very difficult.
If the girls break this rule, he has no hesitation in using the full range of traditional punishments. He'll ground his daughters, withhold their pocket money or forbid them from staying at their aunt's house in the country, or all of the above. Despite his dislike of magic, Philip seems to like Adil as a person! The genie's presence means that Philip is no longer the only man in the house, and gives him someone to watch sport with on the TV and play Tennis by also having fun at the same time. He has encouraged Adil to become a football fan, an F1 fan, a fan of the Olympic Games... in fact he has made him a fan of every single sport you can watch. But if Adil does break the rule and grant his daughters their wishes, he is severely punished, the most effective punishment is being locked up in the lamp for an entire weekend.
Philip has forbidden his daughters to use Adil's services and extends that ban to himself. But you never know what might happen in the future and it's extremely likely that one day, he just might crack.
Adam Morris, who as Wayne Morris was the hapless Robin in Maid Marian and her Merry Men, is a well-known actor, with a string of fine performances, both stage and screen, under his belt. He obviously enjoys his role as Philip Norton, the slightly bemused and bewildered father of the house. Adam gets to play many characters, as he usually bears the brunt of Adil's wishtakes, including a caveman, hippy, a nine-year-old (which was actually played by his son) and an 100-year-old Philip, a garden gnome, a James Bond type secret agent, a stunt man, and his own daughter.
Older of the sisters. Passionate about what makes the world tick, Sophie's favourite lessons are physics, chemistry, history and geography and she would love to go to university and to study as many subjects and languages as possible. She apparently doesn't like drama,however. Days off, weekends and holidays are full of activities, sports, and educational visits of all kinds. She is not particularly interested in romance, often being oblivious to the attentions of boys until Emma 'kindly' points out her crush on her boyfriend Clive.
Sophie thinks Adil is great but at times clueless. He never, ever stops asking questions and Sophie just loves to answer as many as she can. Although she doesn't like it, on several occasions she has defied her father by making wishes, and has decided that if she's going to risk breaking her father's rules, she must take the utmost care.
Younger of the two sisters by a year, Emma finds schoolwork intensely boring unlike her sister. She manages to get by at school without too much difficulty, but without any brilliance either. She does appear to enjoy reading, but much prefers a good story to boring facts and figures in textbooks. Her days off, her weekends and holidays are organised around going to see a film with her friends, spending hours painting, shopping, designing, singing (although she is no good), watching TV, going to parties, dating, dancing or moving the furniture around in her room...
She loves her friends and her favourite topic of conversation is boys. She at times gets on well with Adil especially since she loves to hear his wacky stories, whether they are true or not. Although she knows the risks of Adil's botching magic they do not phase her; indeed, she seems to get some fun out of the ridiculous situations his magic gets them into. She loves designing clothes and dreams of becoming a top fashion designer.
Philip's helping hand around the house and with the girls. Although, technically she lived next door, she managed to persuade Philip years ago to give her a key to the house so she could come and go as necessary. Her character was introduced as a possible love interest for Philip, but it was felt that this was more of a hindrance than a help to his character. Caroline was not brought back for the next two series and her character is referred to as having recently moved to France and married. It is possibly that the actress who played her did not renew her contract.
- Abdab (Nicholas Khan) (series 1-2)
- Aisha (Leyla Pellegrini)
- Alex Delaney (Shamus Iqbal)
- Ali Baba (Peter Peralta)
- Amak (Miss Spinelli's Intut Husband) (Tom Kenny) Note: Miss Spinelli and Amak are apparently able to speak fluent Intut.
- Anabell Scott (Hannah Tointon) (Series 1)
- Bonnie Swift (Georgia Slowe)
- Clive (Darren John) (Series 2-4)
- Dancer (Pixie Lott) (Series 1 Episode 14)
- Djamola (Deborah Alobah)
- Elmer Norton (Glyn Angell) (series 3)
- Frank McCartney (David McMullen)
- Harold (Jack Blumenau) (series 1)
- Hunk (Glyn Angell)
- Jamilla (Susan Kyd)
- Lady Isabella (Elizabeth Conboy)
- Len (Alexander Wilson)
- Lindy Lou (Kristal Archer)
- Mamoun (Matthew Leitch)
- Melissa Fox (Ellen Lister) (series 2)
- Miss Mayer (Katy Bartrop)
- Mr Hull(Richard Freeman)
- Mr Preston (Philip Fox)
- Mr Ying (Mako) Note: He can speak fluent Japanese .
- Mr. Osterman (Johnnie Lyne-Pirkis) Note: He was born in Austria .
- The Mummy (Tom Underwood)
- Nanette (Olivia Caffrey)
- Nev (Harry Lloyd)
- One of The Rejects (Danielle Mitchell)
- One of The Rejects (Eleanor Wild)
- One of The Rejects (Kayleigh Batchelor)
- One of The Rejects (Lyneah Johnson)
- Owen (Theo Fraiser Steele) (Series 2-4)
- Peggy (Arabella Weir) (series 2)
- Prince Otto (Nathan Guy)
- Prince Otto's Courtier (Eric Kolelas)
- Royal Hunk (Joshua Bowman)
- School Friend (Jermaine Lynch)
- Shona (Jessica Ashworth)
- Sophie's PA (Naomi Heffernan)