Thursday, July 24, 2008

ITV's drama and comedy priorities

In Broadcast, ITV commissioners reveal what they are looking for from programme makers.

They include Laura Mackie,director of drama commissioning:
The hunt for returnable 9pm series remains Mackie's top priority, with the emphasis on giving familiar genres an original twist.

There are some gaps in non-genre, contemporary life drama, and indies should look again at workplace dramas that could recapture the success of the likes of London's Burning.

State-of-the nation pieces are also on the agenda, though they need to be accessible rather than worthy, and Mackie is happy to take darker themes to balance the glossy glamour of the likes of The Palace and Harley Street.
And Michaela Hennessy-Vass, commissioning editor, comedy:
Sitcoms are the key priority for Hennessy-Vass, who has spent the past year refining what works for ITV in scripted comedy.

Sketch shows are pretty well covered by a handful of development projects and instead the focus is on broad appeal - something that viewers could grasp if it was summed up in one line, such as the package holidays of Benidorm or the call centres of Mumbai Calling.

While she wants universal ideas, they need to be modern - not things that could have worked on ITV 10 or 20 years ago.

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