Monday, May 19, 2008

BBC drama debate continues

Following the post-BAFTA Awards criticism of BBC TV's drama output, producer Robert Cooper adds his voice to the debate in The Guardian.
There is much fine drama on the BBC. To make popular series and serials that are consistently enjoyed and appreciated by a big audience is a huge challenge. Such shows play an important role in the schedules of a public service broadcaster. But they should not be made at the expense of the kind of drama that only a public service broadcaster can nurture and fund - thought-provoking and challenging fiction that doesn't fit easily into a popular schedule precisely because it expresses a personal vision - drama that might not appeal to 7 million people but which is just as valuable for speaking so strongly to 1 million.

The reason for the much diminished opportunities for such authored drama results from a decision made around seven years ago. Mainstream BBC drama was failing to attract large audiences and ITV was cleaning up in the ratings war. So money that had been used to fund "difficult" dramas on BBC2 was moved across to fund popular drama on BBC1. Within its own terms, the policy was judged to be a success. BBC popular drama flourished and the main executive responsible - Jane Tranter - now enjoys a very special position.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.