Docs

Channel 5 marks 20th anniversary with new doc slate

UK commercial broadcaster Channel 5 is marking its 20th anniversary Thursday with the unveiling of its upcoming doc slate.  Its forthcoming lineup includes the new doc strand ‘Modern Britain’, which features award-winning ...
March 30, 2017

UK commercial broadcaster Channel 5 is marking its 20th anniversary Thursday with the unveiling of its upcoming doc slate. 

Its forthcoming lineup includes the new doc strand ‘Modern Britain’, which features award-winning directors tackling timely issues in a series of films. The Abused and Rape (w/t) are the strand’s first 90-minute commissions. The Abused from Brinkworth Films looks at the issue of domestic violence and Rape, from Lambert Productions, is an examination of the aftermath of rape, exploring support for victims and how perpetrator are brought to justice. 

“I’m keen to hear the best ideas and the most innovative ways of telling these stories. We’ll also fund them well. In the Netflix age, not only are our documentaries driving reputational change; films like The Accused are cutting through massively online, achieving record-breaking VOD figures and trending on social media,” said Guy Davies, commissioning editor, factual, Channel 5, in a statement.

The broadcaster has also signed historian and architecture-loving presenter Michael Portillo for two series in 2017 and 2018. He will host Abandoned Britain (4 x 60″), where he will explore Britain’s most intriguing abandoned buildings. Many of these buildings are on the list to be demolished and could soon be lost forever. Portillo has also signed up for a second (8 x 60″) as yet unannounced, documentary series for 2018. Both series are executive produced by Jazz Gowans and Mark Powell for Transparent TV.

Building on Slum Britain: 50 Years On, ITN Productions has been commissioned to produce a new film, Black Britain: 50 Years On. The film is based on the anniversary of Enoch Powell’s Rivers of Blood speech and will explore multiculturalism, immigration and race relations in Britain in the five decades since. The 90-minue film will be executive produced by ITN Productions’ head of topical programs Ian Rumsey, alongside editorial director Chris Shaw.

Following the single film The Accused (pictured), Brinkworth Films will produce four films that will follow an individual accused of a serious crime for the first time, all the way from accusation to trial. The series is executive produced by Malcolm Brinkworth for Brinkworth and directed by Rob McCabe.

Special access documentaries looking at gangs will also be on the slate, with Mentorn Media commissioned to take an in-depth look at gang life across the UK. Inside the Gang (3 x 60″) will examine three separate issues surrounding gangs: the next generation of gangsters, girls and gangs and how drug money underpins gangs. Tayte Simpson is the executive producer and Tom Willis is series producer.

C5 has also commissioned a new four-part series of Gangland. This time, the series will explore gang-life outside of London. Maroon Productions will use similar techniques as the first series with much of the footage filmed by the gangs themselves. Go-Pro cameras are delivered anonymously via pre-arranged dead drops.

Maroon Productions have also been commissioned to make the series Inside the Sex Business (3 x 60″), an honest look at the lives of those working in the sex industry. Gaining unparalleled access, the new series explores the stories inside this closed world and what drives people to buy the services of these workers. The series airs this autumn. Both series will be exec produced by Paul Blake.

About The Author
Meagan Kashty is an associate editor of realscreen, an international print and online magazine that covers the non-fiction film and television industries. Meagan is an award-winning business journalist. Prior to joining the realscreen team, Meagan was online editor of Canadian Grocer, named Magazine of the Year at the 2015 Canadian Business Media Awards. She can be reached at mkashty@brunico.com, and you can follow her on Twitter @MegKashty

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