ITV

The Secret of Soaps: The Story Behind the Stories

No one could accuse Coronation Street of taking it easy, even though this would be understandable for a middle-aged British telly institution. Over the last couple of years the ITV soap has given viewers multiple murders, deaths and suicides; explosions and a minibus crash; a pre-teen pregnancy; and even a gay vicar.

Audiences have been lapping up the drama, which regularly attracts more than 7 million viewers. Corrie remains the nation’s favourite soap.

Ten things you might not know about Coronation Street

Helen Worth as Gail Platt (Credit: ITV)

 

1. The Rovers by numbers

Everyone's favourite local watering hole the Rovers Return Inn may seem like a fake pub, but staff still pull a hefty number of pints each week, and Betty's famous hotpot lives on long after actress Betty Driver passed away in 2011. Weekly, The Rovers serves up 1,440 pints, 100 gin and tonics, and 84 hotpots - as well as 2,500 bags of crisps per year. The beer served is actually very weak - and very sweet - shandy, and the gin and tonics are just fizzy water and lime.

 

Live blog: Content, Consumers and Everything In Between

McCall is joined by Susanna Reid, Neil Mortensen, Kevin Lygo and the consumer panel in Leeds with Ranvir Singh, as they discuss a wide ranging look at the challenges and opportunities for the television industry in a fast-changing world.

Chairs

Susanna ReidJournalist and Broadcaster 

Ranvir Singh, Journalist and Broadcaster

Speakers

Emily Watson to star in adaption of Too Close

Emily Watson (Credit: Pierre Vinet)

Too Close follows Dr Emma Robinson (Emily Watson), a forensic psychiatrist who is assigned to assess Connie, a patient accused of a terrible crime that she cannot remember committing.

Robinson attempts to determine if Connie is fit to stand trial and learns of a complicated relationship between Connie and her beautiful best friend Ness, who appears to have a strong influence on her mental condition.

Jeff Pope discusses writing drama and looks back at his life in TV

Caroline Frost and Jeff Pope (Credit: Phil Lewis/Media24)

Speaking to the RTS he said: “It meant that people came to me with their ideas. Steve Coogan came to me with Philomena (Coogan and Pope’s screenplay was nominated for an Oscar and won best screenplay at the Venice Film Festival).

“Success gets you meetings, but it still doesn’t get something past the finishing line if it’s not good enough…It also means you can be more ambitious and more expansive.”

Carolyn McCall: We want Cambridge to bring in the voice of the consumer

ITV CEO Carolyn McCall (Credit: ITV)

It may be Carolyn McCall’s first RTS Cambridge but she knows what she wants from the convention’s speakers. They should be positive and provocative. She also wants to hear from the voices of the people who consume the content.

“There is no point going into the Cambridge Convention with an attitude of ‘It’s all doom and gloom’. Yes, there are challenges but the opportunities for content creators have never been greater,” she emphasises.

Neil Thompson’s TV diary

The Good Morning Britain team taking a group selfie (Credit: ITV)

OK, in the spirit of apologetic full disclosure, this ain’t a normal week for me. It’s August. Piers and Susanna are off (deservedly – thought I’d better slip that in) on their French car factory-style summer sojourn. I’m also sneaking in a bit of R&R and extra-curricular that the normal 100-hour week doesn’t allow.

At Latitude, the hybrid Glasto crossed with church fête Suffolk festival, where, among the middle aged of the mojito-fuelled mosh pit, I bump (literally) into my ex-ITV boss Peter Fincham for our annual blokey embrace.

ITV commissions crime drama series Invisible

The contemporary crime series, created and written by Robert Murphy (DCI Banks), gives viewers a new story each episode.

A classic crime story is at the heart of the series and the first episode features two crime mysteries investigated by chalk and cheese duo, the wildly ambitious DCI McDonald (Tala Gouveia, Cold Feet) and the shy, modest DS Dodds (Jason Watkins, The Crown); the pair form a quarrelsome but effective partnership.