Event Report

The making of Channel 4's A Day in the Life of Coronavirus Britain

Candour Productions creative director Anna Hall was talking about making Channel 4 film A Day in the Life of Coronavirus Britain at an RTS Yorkshire webinar in early June.

The Leeds-based indie planned the doc in two and a half weeks – and shot and edited it in just three days.

It was a ‘fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants’ experience,” recalled Hall. “We had nine people shooting across the country and the biggest team ever of people sitting in their pyjamas at their kitchen tables producing.”

His Dark Materials creators discuss why collaboration was the foundation of the series

Jack Thorne, Dan McCulloch, Joel Collins, Jane Tranter and Russell Dodgson (Credit: Phil Lewis)

That was the main takeaway from an RTS question and answer session following an exclusive screening of the final episode of season one.

All five panellists emphasised how working as a team was fundamental to the show, described by one reviewer as “a riveting realisation” of Pullman’s world.

“We did a lot of talking. It’s not me alone at my desk but a lot of people working together,” explained Jack Thorne who wrote the script for His Dark Materials.

The cast of ITV2's Zomboat! discuss escaping a zombie apocalypse in Birmingham

Hamza Jeetooa, Cara Theobold, Adam Miller, Leah Brotherhead and Ryan McKen (Credit: Nick Robinson)

Jeetooa said: “If you messed up your line, the boat team had to get on and very slowly reverse the boat back to the starting spot. That’s the reverse of shame.”

The 69ft narrow boat, called Dorothy, is the fifth star of Zomboat!. It plays a vital role as the very slow means of escape for sisters Kat and Jo and friends Sunny (Jeetooa) and Amar when a zombie apocalypse breaks out in Birmingham.

Young talent celebrated at the RTS Cymru Awards

Newcomer award winner Ellis Clark and Industry Breakthrough award winner Sian Thomas (Credit: Huw John)

The awards also saw the launch of two Industry Awards to recognise the work of individuals in behind-the camera roles at the start of their television careers. 

Both awards went to ITV Cymru Wales employees: production specialist Ellis Clark received the Newcomer award and journalist Sian Thomas, the Industry Breakthrough award. The latter prize is for TV talent with a minimum of two years’ experience in the industry and at least one on-screen credit.

What advertisers want: how audience measurement is changing

Kate Bulkley, John Litster, Matt Hill, Rich Astley, Sarah Rose and Justin Sampson (Credit: Paul Hampartsoumain)

With the rapid increase in video-on-demand (VoD) viewing, over-the-top services such as Netflix and mobile TV, working out who watches TV – and when and where – has become a complicated business.

This is the data that advertisers want – and which ratings body Barb is doing its utmost to provide, according to chief executive Justin Sampson.

“What really matters now is talent” VFX experts discuss breaking into the industry

(Credit: Phil Lewis)

“It’s a growth industry – there should be lots of jobs to go around,” argued Louise Hastings, VFX producer at Milk Visual Effects, whose credits include BBC One’s Doctor Who and ITV historical drama Victoria.

“Netflix and Amazon are creating more and more content with bigger and bigger budgets – we can’t keep up with the amount of work we’re asked to bid for at the moment,” she continued.

“TV is going to keep Soho very busy. We’re also getting a lot of the American films [shooting] at [Warner Bros, Studios] Leavesden, like Fantastic Beasts.”

A Transgender Story: RTS Wales takes a look at representation in the media

The documentary, which was made by Swansea-based indie Telesgop, aired in May on BBC One in Wales and a month later in England.

It continues the story told by 2016 doc Swansea Sparkle: A Transgender Story about the biggest transgender event in Wales. This followed three people from the transgender community – including Llyr Jones – in the lead-up to the event.