Harries, just back from the Mipcom programming market, sees the BBC's commitment as key in a market where commercial broadcasters appear to be struggling with imaginative high-profile drama. "When I go out in the market I still get a good reaction - there's a desire for stuff, but right now money is pretty tight," he shrugs. "I expect the accent will be more on entertainment and feelgood drama than the harder stuff."
He predicts dramas such as Channel 4's recent The Shooting of Thomas Hurndall will be difficult to find in an industry threatened with the credit crunch and the rise of download culture. "I think Channel 4 would like to keep doing it but I think they will find it hard. ITV is changing and not for the bad necessarily. It's becoming an entertainment channel with the odd piece of quality drama. You can't beat up ITV for their commercial pressures. If they judge they need X Factor for their money and audience and future then you can't blame them for that."
Monday, October 27, 2008
In The Guardian, Stephen Armstrong talks to independent drama producer, Andy Harries (formerly of Granada), about the state of drama on TV.