What's happened to... Jack Docherty?

ONCE upon a time (well, 1997), Edinburgh-born Docherty seemed to be everywhere thanks to his nightly chat show on brand new Channel Five, which ran to more than 400 episodes. Even so, he'll best be remembered as the guy who unleashed self-styled Shiny Poof Graham Norton on the TV world. The Irish wag sat in for him so often that the programme was re-dubbed Not the Jack Docherty Show.

Docherty says the format wasn't his thing ("you would be talking to people about what they were doing, and you actually wanted to be doing it yourself") and that his only regret is not signing Norton to his production company when he was still going cheap.

Prior to that Docherty wrote for Spitting image and Alas Smith and Jones, among others, and acted on Channel 4's sketch show Absolutely (which he also produced), not to mention running the gamut of mocking panel quiz shows. Latterly, he even guested on Monarch of the Glen. His greatest success has been as half of Absolute Productions, which he set up with Moray Hunter. Among their writer-producer projects are Trigger Happy TV, Stressed Eric, and Mr Don and Mr George.

Like fellow comic Julian Clary, Docherty's Waterloo was an awards show. While hosting 2000's Baftas he gave away the ending to The Sixth Sense. After that, the audience saw a dead comic whose attempts to resuscitate the evening proved fruitless.

He has two films in development, Watertight and Scotsville, but the most promising project on the boards is a 30-minute sitcom BBC2 commissioned this winter. The Cup centres on the obsessive parents of under-11 football players.