At a late-July event, ‘The future of shows’, Darren Woolfson of Molinare, Abby Parsall (Boxer Systems), Ciaran Doran (Rohde & Schwarz), MC Patel (Emotion Systems) and Mark Birchall (Tradefair) formed an impressive panel, chaired by Penny Westlake (Interra Systems).
Here are our top picks.
Tuesday 4th August
Channel 4, 10pm
In the one-off documentary The Talk, Channel 4 shines a light on a talk that takes place in the black community, which those outside of the community often don’t know about.
Here are our TV picks for this week.
Paramedics: Britain’s Lifesavers
Monday 13th July, 9pm
The Covid-19 pandemic has put a lot of strain and pressure on many of our essential services, but especially on the ambulance service who have seen an unprecedented increase in demand.
My idea of heaven is Monty Python’s Whicker’s World spoof, Whicker Island, where our hero wistfully waters whisky while wantonly waxing words with W. For me, hell would be a post-lockdown lock-in in a dodgy pub full of TV pundits.
Brexit and football have taught me not only to distrust these people, but to despise them as they fling unsubstantiated opinions around like the proverbial brown stuff hitting the fan. It is messy, unpleasant and the odour stays with you for ages.
The coronavirus outbreak has left much of the television workforce idle, with most TV production suspended since March. Freelancers, who account for 100,000 of the total TV and film workforce of 180,000, have been dealt the rawest of deals. They have been hit hardest by the lockdown – 93% are out of work, according to The Film and TV Charity.
Unprecedented times demand creative thinking. An RTS webinar heard that shows as different as ITV’s Coronation Street, the BBC’s Top Gear and Channel 4’s Sunday Brunch have all learnt how to adapt their production routines to keep cast and crew safe in the age of Covid-19.
It’s the end of an era. The country is slowly easing out of lockdown. Against the odds, we’ve delivered a show to the BBC and become surprising best mates with the Bank of England, and I’m leaving the Beano for new adventures.
Our brilliant Beano team adapted to lockdown at lightning speed, despite some becoming quite poorly with Covid-19 symptoms. We mobilised everyone to work from home early and we’ve kept all content production across TV, digital and the comic on track. Endless innovation, creativity and cheer has shone through.
“The [TV] industry genuinely is changing for the better, but we are where we are because lots of people have talked about stuff and not enough people have done anything,” added the CEO of Plimsoll Productions.
“We’re trying to appeal to broad audiences. How on earth can we do that if it’s all being seen through the prism of a bunch of middle-class white people? They should be part of the group, not the whole bloody group.”
Mansfield was part of a panel assembled for an RTS West of England webinar in late June discussing the health of the region’s TV production.
Another week, another huge challenge for BBC News, as it strives to navigate a path between its commitment to impartiality, the clear moral cause behind the movement, and covering the protests in all their complexity.
"Our reporting of the protests at the weekend made it quite clear that the day in London ended in some violence. What weight do you give that? It’s down to editorial judgement on the day," explained Fran Unsworth, in conversation with Stewart Purvis for the RTS.
Nearly nine in every 10 people working in the sector have experienced mental health problems, according to research from The Film and TV Charity, which co-hosted the online event in early June.
“That is significantly higher than the UK population as a whole, where the figure is 65%,” said Alex Pumfrey, CEO of the charity. “There is a much higher prevalence of mental health problems for people working within film and television.”
She added: “More than half of people working in the industry have considered taking their own life.”