Docs

ITV commissions elite Parachute Regiment docuseries

UK commercial broadcaster ITV has picked up a new 3 x 60-minute docuseries on the UK’s elite Parachute Regiment (known as the Paras), which has opened its doors to broadcast ...
December 7, 2018

UK commercial broadcaster ITV has picked up a new 3 x 60-minute docuseries on the UK’s elite Parachute Regiment (known as the Paras), which has opened its doors to broadcast network cameras for the first time since the 1980s.

The Paras: Men of War (wt), filmed over 12 months, offers unique access to the group and the training process that takes new recruits and turns them into elite soldiers, with only a few making the cut after extreme tests of endurance.

The series features a behind-the-scenes look at the young men recruited and those tasked with training them.

It is produced by Avanti Media and was commissioned by Tom Giles, controller of current affairs, for ITV. At Avanti, Neil Grant serves as executive producer and Nick Betts as series producer and director.

“At a moment when the armed forces are under more scrutiny than ever, this new series presents a unique opportunity to see inside the world of the Parachute Regiment, which is usually firmly closed to outsiders, and get a powerful understanding of the people and culture within an elite, sometimes controversial, regiment that we all know of, but about which we have little real inside knowledge,” said Giles, in a statement.

Said Betts: “The Paras are trained killers who’ve courted secrecy, controversy and admiration in equal measure, and who largely view all ‘media’ with extreme caution. The dialogue with the Regiment involved a long period of just listening, without filming — but then slowly the real men behind their identities as soldiers emerged. The ambition of the series was to show the raw, often brutal truth of why young men from all backgrounds desire to become Paratroopers. And in order to do this they must strip away the person they are, to become capable of killing.”

About The Author
Barry Walsh is editor and content director for realscreen, and has served as editor of the publication since 2009. With a career in entertainment media that spans two decades, prior to realscreen, he held the associate editor post for now defunct sister publication Boards, which focused on the advertising and commercial production industries. Before Boards, he served as editor of Canadian Music Network, a weekly music industry trade, and as music editor for HMV.com. As content director, he also oversees the development of content for the brand's market-leading events, the Realscreen Summit and Realscreen West, as well as new content initiatives.

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