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BBC Series Asian Provocateur

Updated: Jun 13, 2023

British Stand-up comedian Romesh Ranganathan travels to Sri Lanka, his parent's homeland to connect with his roots for a six part series titled Asian Provocateur for BBC3. The people he meets, the places he goes, the experiences he has will all have been set up by his mum who is sending her son on the trip she has always wished he'd make.

Romesh, who considers himself British through and through, grew up in Crawley, doesn’t speak a word of Tamil, has no idea about his cultural heritage and has almost zero desire to go to Sri Lanka. This makes for a hugely enjoyable hybrid of comedy and documentary offering a fresh take on the travelogue genre.

Romesh experiences many aspects of Sri Lankan life and culture including the Kathragama festival, the Pada Yathra, stilt fishing, elephant baths, a ritual Thovil exorcism, meets the aboriginal Vedda, tries the traditional martial art of Angampora, meets a crocodile man, a snake man, gets an Ayurvedic enema and makes a Tamil film among many other hilarious adventures.

The series was produced by Rumpus Media UK for BBC3. The series producer was Benjamin Green. Ranganathan was nominated for a Best Entertainment Performance BAFTA for this series. Following the success of the Sri Lanka series, the BBC commissioned a second series of the show titled "Mum's American Dream", which was broadcast on BBC one in 2016.

The Dreamforge was the local producer and location services provider for the Asian Provocateur in Sri Lanka. All six episodes of this series were filmed in Sri Lanka. The Dreamforge were the fixers and production managers for the shoot handling all research, permits, transport, logistics and location management.

Romesh learns how to drive a tuk-tuk - Asian Provocateur: Episode 4 Preview

Romesh Ranganathan holds open auditions in Sri Lanka - Asian Provocateur: Episode 5 Preview

Romesh Ranganathan cheats at a Sri Lankan sports day - Asian Provocateur: Episode 6 Preview

Romesh's martial arts training - Asian Provocateur: Episode 3 Preview

Romesh meets the 'Snake Man' - Asian Provocateur: Episode 2 Preview

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