Polly Hill

ITV Head of Drama Polly Hill: the woman with the Midas touch

Polly Hill looks into the camera, wearing a black top

“My dad always told me you can change the world with drama, particularly new writing, and I would reply: ‘You can’t.’”

Polly Hill speaks fondly of her father, the veteran actor Dave Hill, whose long list of stage, film and TV credits testifies to his half-century in the business, and who used to take his teenage daughter weekly to the theatre for inspiration. “Then Mr Bates came along. My dad’s nearly 80 now, and he took delight in saying: ‘See, I told you.’”

ITV commissions new drama series Clean Break

Clean Break follows the story of single mother and cleaning lady Sam (Sheridan Smith), who becomes caught up in the dangerous world of insider trading.

The drama focuses on the struggles of the working class protagonist leading a dual life in online gambling whilst acting as devoted mother fighting for custody of her two daughters.

She soon realises she has access to powerful stock market information and sees it as her opportunity to get her life back.

Hill sweeps to the top

Polly Hill

In a smooth transition, the personable Polly Hill has become the BBC’s new Controller of Drama Commissioning. She takes over without so much as dropping a script from LA-bound Ben Stephenson.

Her new job is one of the most coveted and powerful positions in UK television. Hill is responsible for the wide range of drama across BBC One and BBC Two, an estimated budget of £200m annually, spiced with the challenge of devising a new online policy, principally for BBC Three. She also has oversight of EastEnders, Casualty and Holby City.