With virtually all exhibitions and show events cancelled until at least the end of 2020, an RTS Thames Valley panel of guests discuss whether shows, as we have known them, have a future, and if so, what might they look like? Or will it be “business as usual”?
But the economic fallout from the lockdown will mean that the PSBs will face a fight to sustain the high-quality programmes and services to which audiences are accustomed.
This stark message was made in a RTS Cymru Wales webinar featuring a panel made up of the heads of the country’s broadcasting organisations.
Taking part in “Broadcasting in Wales: Lockdown and beyond” were: Rhodri Talfan Davies, director of BBC Cymru Wales; Phil Henfrey, head of news and programmes at ITV Cymru Wales; and Owen Evans, chief executive of S4C.
For BBC News video journalist Dougal Shaw, capturing stories alone is a lot easier with just a phone.
“You’re not very nimble with a normal camera and all the equipment… and with news output people don’t know the difference between footage filmed on a phone and footage filmed on a camera,” he said.
Shaw also recognised that interviewing people with a big camera can be intimidating, whereas a smartphone feels more natural.
“Don’t hold back,” advised the disabled basketball Paralympic medallist speaking at an RTS Futures webinar.
Adepitan said that he had got into TV by luck: “I didn’t go to uni, I went to the university of life.” His first job in TV was working for a cable station, which, in the early 1990s, was looking for a wheelchair-bound basketball player to appear on screen.
Initially he declined their invitation, but when the station offered him £250 for the gig he seized the chance.
Bursary alumni Suzanne Pearson and Florence Watson – part of the inaugural 2014 cohort of the scheme, who both graduated in 2017 – offered tips on how to get a foot in the door of the industry at the end of May. From producing soap script bibles to advice on maintaining a work-life-balance on 18-hour shooting days, they left no stone unturned.
She is now penning the second series of the hit BBC drama, which is based on the diaries of a 19th century landowner exploring her lesbian sexuality.
Progress, however, has been slow. “I’ve got tons of work to do, but I’ve found it very hard to concentrate,” admitted Wainwright. She has turned out one episode during eight weeks of lockdown, a slower pace of writing than usual.
Normally, she said, “I take my deadlines very seriously”, but the coronavirus outbreak has put back filming of the new series from June to September.
Former production coordinator Sam Tatlow, whose credits include The Inbetweeners, Misfits and Mad Dogs, revealed the secrets of working in a production office during an RTS Futures webinar.
The freelance nature of the industry means making a good first impression is key, Tatlow stressed, that often means going above and beyond, checking that the kitchen is tidy, or that the stationery cupboard is in order, because these are the things people will notice.
We will look at the prospects for TV advertising, the public and private organisations’ funding models, and the implications for the BBC and the broader PSB system. We will also ask what Ofcom and the government need to do to ensure the continued success of our TV sector.
- Lindsey Clay , CEO, Thinkbox
- Claire Enders, Founder, Enders Analysis
- Damian Green MP
- Sean McGuire, Managing Director, Oliver & Ohlbaum
- Chaired by Kate Bulkley, Media Commentator