Social history series A Tabloid Empire (working title) will cover the period from 1997 to 2012, looking at how the popular press exerted astonishing power over British politics, public policies and everyday life. It will also chronicle the succession of scandals which hit Murdoch's businesses and culminated in the Leveson Enquiry.
“Genres go through cycles and I feel a lack of confidence about the genre at the moment across British broadcasting,” argued the BBC’s history commissioner Tom McDonald.
The exec, who also commissions specialist factual and natural history shows for the BBC, praised the efforts of other broadcasters – “When Channel 4 do history they do it very well and differently to us; Channel 5 do some really fantastic history” – but he added that “the ecosystem only works if everyone is doing it.
“I don’t worry about finding the next generation of on-screen historians,” he continued.