Virtual Vlad to host new BBC chat show

London (AFP) –


A computer generated Vladimir Putin is to host a comedy chat-show on the BBC, with British political spin doctor Alastair Campbell among those pitting his wits against the Russian leader, the broadcaster announced Wednesday.

Two short pilot episodes of the semi-scripted show "Tonight with Vladimir Putin" are set to be aired on the BBC Two channel next month, each featuring two guests.

But the star of the show will be a 3D digital cartoon of Putin, created using performance capture technology, enabling him to walk around and sit behind the desk, "interviewing real human guests in front of a studio audience, all in real-time".

"Everybody's favourite bear-wrestling global strongman Vladimir Putin has finally achieved his ultimate goal -? a chat-show on the BBC," the British broadcaster said in its announcement.

"Forget global politics, landing two pilot episodes on BBC Two of his soon to be world-famous chat show marks the ultimate victory for Vlad, leader of the free world."

In one of the shows, the fictional Vlad is shown trying to get his head around feminism -- in another he thanks Campbell "for his part in making such a mess of things," the BBC said.

Britain and Russia are at loggerheads following the poisoning of former Russian spy Sergei Skripal in the town of Salisbury last year.