BBC3 has announced a raft of upcoming factual programs, including several that are part of a season devoted to mental health.
Mental health-themed programs include OCD Camp, a 2 x 60-minute program from Watershed TV that follows six British teens and young adults living with OCD as they head to the U.S. for a treatment program.
The one-hour special Mental Me, from Pioneer Productions, aims to “explain the science behind the most common mental illnesses that affect young people – why they develop in the first place, what’s going on inside our bodies and what we can do to treat them,” according to the network.
Firecracker Films’ 90-minute special, Minds like Ours, will feature young people with mental disorders including schizophrenia and bipolar disorder turning the cameras on themselves to tell their stories, in their own words.
Inside a Teenage Mental Health Unit, a 3 x 60-minute series from Platform Productions, takes its cameras to McGuinness Unit in Manchester, one of the largest teenage mental health units in Britain, and features the stories of both the patients and the staff.
The one-hour Rachel Bruno: Me and My Dad, produced in-house by BBC Productions, is an authored doc featuring Rachel, daughter of UK boxing legend Frank Bruno. The pugilist was diagnosed with bipolar affective disorder, more commonly known as manic depression, and in the film, his daughter speaks with him and with others who suffer from the illness.
The one-hour special Football: Schizophrenia and Me, from Blast Films, tells the story of a football league in which every player has a mental health disorder, and follows a group of key characters over the course of a year.
Another British pubcaster, Channel 4, had its own mental health season last summer.
Outside of the mental health season, the 6 x 60-minute series Barely Legal Drivers from Renegade Pictures will secretly follow inexperienced teen drivers to see how they handle the responsibility of operating a motor vehicle, via cars fitted with state of the art cameras and hidden recorders that will track their journeys. The teens’ parents will be monitoring the driving, and will have to decide if their kids are careful drivers or if they need more lessons.
“Our mantra of never afraid to try to new things will continue into 2013 and this raft of new commissions shows our commitment to bold, thought-provoking programs for 16-34s,” said Zai Bennett (pictured), controller for BBC3, in a statement.