Glasgow-based factual prodco IWC, a Banijay Group company, is producing two new unscripted series for UK art-centric TV channel Sky Arts: Boswell & Johnson’s Scottish Road Trip with Frank Skinner & Denise Mina and Van Gogh: An Exclusive View – from Tate Britain.
Boswell & Johnson’s Scottish Road Trip (3 x 60 minutes) follows comedian Frank Skinner and best-selling novelist Denise Mina as they recreate Samuel Johnson and James Boswell’s famous 1773 Grand Tour of Scotland. The trip will tap into Skinner and Mina’s longtime fascinations with Johnson and Boswell, respectively. They will travel around the coast of Scotland via carriages, horses and boats in keeping with the 18th-century voyage.
In Van Gogh, a one-off 60-minute special, curator and broadcaster Kate Bryan (pictured) offers an all-access look at the Tate Britain’s upcoming Van Gogh exhibition, showcasing the famous Dutch painter’s time in Britain. The special follows the success of IWC’s Picasso Live from Tate Modern in 2018.
Both series were commissioned by Sky Arts director Phil Edgar-Jones. Barbara Lee serves as commissioning executive for Boswell & Johnson, and Benedetta Pinelli for Van Gogh. Both are executive produced by Franny Moyle for IWC and distributed globally by Banijay Rights.
“Since I joined IWC less than five years ago, with a brief to build a slate of high-end specialist factual work, we have worked consistently with Sky Arts on a range of bold arts programs,” said Moyle in a statement. “These recent commissions are testimony to the channel’s dedication to thoughtful, granular, entertaining, and original approaches to cultural topics and we’re just so pleased to be part of the channel’s journey.”
“When Frank came to us with an idea to recreate the footsteps of Boswell and Johnson I didn’t hesitate to say yes,” added Edgar-Jones. “Exploring Scotland’s cultural heritage is something I have long been obsessed by, and with the tremendous skills of IWC added to the mix this is a beautiful start. That, plus bringing us exclusive access to Tate Britain’s blockbuster Van Gogh show is a glorious double eye and earful for the Sky Arts fan.”