Ben Elton's Australian comedy series axed

Image caption,
In the 1980s Elton became a leading figure in British comedy

British comic Ben Elton's new show in Australia has been axed after three episodes, it has been announced.

Live from Planet Earth, a combination of stand-up and sketch broadcast entirely live, was originally commissioned for six episodes.

"We are all very proud of the show but unfortunately it has not found the audience we had hoped for," a spokesman for the Nine Network said.

Elton's spokesperson was not immediately available for comment.

''Comedy is always risky, and live comedy is the riskiest of all,'' Nine's director of television Michael Healy told The Sydney Herald newspaper.

The show's debut episode attracted an average audience of 455,000 viewers and ratings have continued to drop, the newspaper reported.

In the 1980s, stand up comedian Elton became a leading figure in British comedy after creating successful shows such as The Young Ones and Blackadder.

He went on to write several books and more recently wrote the West End musicals We Will Rock You and Love Never Dies.

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