Celebrity Crystal Maze
Channel 4, 10pm
Created and written by comedian Alex Horne, the series stars Greg Davies as the Taskmaster, with Horne acting as Davies’ assistant and umpire during the tasks.
Each series, five contestants compete each week to score the highest mark on the bizarre tasks set by the Taskmaster.
Taskmaster originally aired on Dave, but will make the move to Channel 4 in 2020 following a new six series deal.
With over 200 tasks to date so far, here is a roundup of some of our favourites.
Produced by Barcroft Studios, the series of short films will explore a range of topics that surround young people in 2019 Britain.
A new style of debate show, Fix Up takes place inside the best-loved beauty salons and barbers in the UK.
The series tackles current issues and topics that impact Britain, including knife crime, abortion, cosmetic surgery, relationships and sex.
Speaking at the RTS London Christmas Lecture, he predicted that despite the growth of streaming services a lot of people would still be watching live, scheduled TV in a decade.
He said: “In ten years’ time linear TV will be distributed by IPTV, but scheduled TV will still be important, that more passive way of consuming curated content will have a very important role, not least in news and entertainment.”
Instead of 60-minute weekly episodes, the new ten-part series will now be 30 minutes.
Ackley Bridge was inspired by real-life Lancashire and Yorkshire schools, which had been set up to help integrate white and Asian communities in some of the most divided towns in the country.
The RTS award-winning series has been praised for tackling real-life issues with intelligence and sensitivity, creating hard-hitting and thought-provoking stories.
“Without the heroic passion” shown by the event director of Olympia’s Media Production & Technology Show, said the judges, “it’s likely that to enjoy high-quality, world-class tradeshows, we here in the UK would have to travel to Amsterdam or Las Vegas”.
Mama Youth Project, which trains young people from under-represented backgrounds to succeed in the media industry, won the Community Improvement award. Over the past 12 years, the project has trained more than 520 people from schools, colleges and homeless refuges, as well as ex-offenders.
She was speaking at an RTS early-evening event in early December that celebrated the enduring appeal of quiz shows.
The audience were treated to a clip of Keppel’s triumph – one of British TV’s most iconic moments. Despite appearing calm and clear-headed as she pondered the jackpot question –Which king was married to Eleanor of Aquitaine?* – Keppel admitted: “I was like a duck – I was paddling madly underneath.
“I wasn’t calm at all. I thought my heartbeat was so loud that the mics would pick it up.”
With programme budgets under pressure, TV is turning to advertisers to fund shows directly. And the amounts that brands can bring to the table are significant – anything up to half a million pounds for an hour of TV.
This was the message from a packed RTS early-evening event in October, at which a panel of leading commissioners, producers and advertising experts discussed how they make branded programming.
In just 20 years, Russell T Davies has left an indelible mark on British television. From Queer as Folk, via Doctor Who, to this year’s dystopian chiller Years and Years, Davies has written unforgettable drama. His work – like the writer in person – is opinionated and loud, but also warm and human.