UK pubcaster Channel 4 (C4) is looking towards the past and the future, with the commission of two historical series and a one-off on whether middle class Americans think their president will win a second term.
Written and presented by C4′s Washington correspondent, the 49-minute special Matt Frei’s Obama and Me (w/t) aims to take a temperature reading during the election year and find out whether Obama will be a one-term president.
Produced by Oxford Films, the one-off (pictured above) will air in November 2012 to coincide with the U.S. presidential elections.
“It is one of the highlights of a reporter’s career to take the feverish pulse of this extraordinary nation in a crucial election year in which so much is at stake and in which one of the most charismatic presidents of recent times could be defeated,” said Frei.
“This film will provide an in-depth and engaging look at American politics at this pivotal moment for Britain’s closest ally,” added Channel 4′s head of factual Ralph Lee. “We’ll follow Matt as he leaves the Washington beltway to get closer to American voters and discover what happened to all the hope and promise that they invested in Obama’s election four years ago.”
C4 has also commissioned Wildfire Television to produce Walking Through History with Tony Robinson (w/t), for a 2013 transmission.
The four-part series sees English actor and presenter Tony Robinson exploring on foot the richest stories from Britain’s past. In each program, Robinson will go on expeditions that will take him through the origins of the Industrial Revolution in the Derwent Valley, Britain’s secret World War Two frontline in Dorset, and the hidden stories of Henry VIII’s court in the Weald.
Various experts he encounters along the way will also reveal places and hidden stories that ordinary walkers might otherwise miss.
Another historical series coming to C4 is about the hunt for the remains of Richard III by archaeologists from the University of Leicester. Darlow Smithson follows the dig, which also involves Leicester City Council and the Richard III Society, which brings them beneath a council car park in Leicester.
The human remains discovered will be sent off for forensic tests to establish whether the last English King was killed in battle, and the results will be revealed in the doc, to be aired later this year.
“This documentary will reveal every step of this incredible search as it unfolds,” said Darlow Smithson executive producer Simon Young. “Richard III has been immortalized in history by Shakespeare, but this account was based on Tudor spin and propaganda. These archaeological discoveries present a unique opportunity to find out who he really was.”