First UK producers receive tax break confirmation

A pair of CBeebies toons and three BBC One dramas are the first UK projects to officially qualify for new television production tax breaks. The CBeebies series are Karrot Entertainment’s Sarah and Duck (pictured) and Famous Flying Films and Mackinnon & Saunders-produced Calamity Island, while Red Planet Pictures’ crime series By Any Means, Origin Pictures’ […]

Vikings drives MGM growth as Tellem joins board

Strong worldwide sales of scripted drama Vikings helped Hollywood studio MGM report revenue growth of 164% in its second quarter. MGM parent MGM Holdings reported revenue of US$339 million for the three months to June 30, 2012, up from US$128.4 million in 2012, news that was compounded by the announcement Microsoft Studios chief and former […]

BBC gets new daytime factual head

UK broadcaster the BBC has gone in-house to find a new head of daytime production. Jeff Anderson, currently editor of BBC One’s consumer rights series Watchdog (pictured), will take up the role, in which he will assume creative control of around 200 hours of daytime programming. He will oversee a daytime development team in Cardiff […]

CBeebies’ Mister Maker gets companion app

Mister Maker, the CBeebies preschool TV series, has got its own companion app. Mister Maker: Let’s Make It! has this morning (August 12) launched on the Apple Store, available for iPad, iPad Mini, iPhone and iPod touch for £2.99 (US$4.63). The P2 Entertainment-produced app allows users to create pictures using nearly 400 different digital art […]

Ofcom report: UK programming spend in decline

Total spend on programming across the five main UK public service broadcast channels, as well as the BBC’s digital channels, dropped 2% year-on-year in 2012, according to Ofcom stats. In its Public Service Broadcasting Annual Report 2013, the UK broadcast regulator said that the decrease in spend resulted in £2.9 billion (US$4.5 billion) going on […]

BBC Four controller role axed

The BBC’s director of television Danny Cohen has scrapped the BBC Four controller that Richard Klein occupied before exiting for ITV. Speculation Cohen would axe the role has been mounting since Klein’s departure in May and the BBC today confirmed BBC Two controller Janice Hadlow (left) would take control of arts and culture-skewed Four. A […]

BBC Worldwide scores Lake, Paradise drama deals

BBC Worldwide has sold its dramas Top of the Lake, The Paradise and Father Brown to a batch of broadcasters around the world. This comes after BBCWW yesterday revealed its programme sales revenues had topped £300 million (US$454 million) for the financial year for the first time. These latest deals see 6x60mins See-Saw Films-produced BBC […]

News brief: ITV’s 12 Yard gets BBC One gameshow order

ITV Studio-backed UK producer 12 Yard has won a commission from BBC One for a new gameshow, Pressure Pad. The high tech gameshowwill be fronted by John Barrowman (Torchwood) and go out on BBC One this autumn. It is set in a “quizzing amphitheatre”, which has an under floor high-res LED screen. Teams then compete […]

BBC confirms Puppet Game Show

UK pubcaster The BBC has confirmed a commission for a long rumoured Saturday primetime puppet series from The Jim Henson Company. The Puppet Game Show will be an 8x45mins coproduction between Henson and BBC In-House Entertainment for leading UK channel BBC One. Filming has begun ahead of a debut later this year. A successful pilot […]

Pact: Channel 5 attitude toward indies ‘worrying’

UK producer body Pact has labelled the terrestrial broadcaster Channel 5’s relationship with local indies “worrying” following results from a new survey. Pact’s membership survey rated Channel 5 as ‘disappointing’ at best in key areas of concern – ‘appreciation of cash flow issues’, ‘dealings regarding terms of trade’ and ‘getting paid on time’. This compared […]