MediaGuardian Edinburgh International Television Festival « Taylor Herring

MediaGuardian Edinburgh International Television Festival

Kenton Allen appointed as Advisory Chair for MGEITF 2012

Posted on October 4th, 2011 in Edinburgh International Television Festival,Event PR,Festival PR,Television Industry PR,Television PR.

The MediaGuardian Edinburgh International Television Festival today announces that Kenton Allen, Chief Executive Big Talk Productions, has been appointed as Advisory Chair for the 2012 festival.

Allen takes over the reins from BBC Director of Vision George Entwistle, who held the position for the duration of the 36th festival year.

Kenton is a multi award-winning programme-maker with credits including the BAFTA-winning sitcoms The Royle Family and Rev and the Oscar-winning film Six Shooter. He was Creative Head of BBC Comedy and BBC Comedy North between 2003 and 2008, producing and executive-producing a diverse range of programming including the BAFTA-winning That Mitchell and Webb Look.

Kenton’s appointment as Chief Executive of Big Talk Productions has seen rapid growth in the Independent Producer over the last 3 years, alongside a number of high profile and award winning productions and a nomination for Best Independent Production Company at last year’s TV festival.

Kenton Allen said: “I think George did a brilliant job this year, and I relish the prospect of getting stuck in and making 2012’s Festival the best it can be. There has never been a more creative and exciting time to be working in television and no other event showcases this like the MGEITF festival. It’s a very special event and I haven’t missed one in 15 years so I feel very honoured to be taking on the role and I’m really looking forward to helping make it unmissable.”

Elaine Bedell, MGEITF Executive Chair said: “I’m very pleased that Kenton is taking on the role of Advisory chair.  In recent years, the role has been held by executives working for the main UK broadcasters, and I think it will be a real benefit for the UK’s main television festival to be chaired this year by someone with such standing from the independent sector, who perfectly understands the pressures and demands of the UK production business.  Added to which, Kenton’s award-winning production experience in comedy and entertainment promises a 2012 festival programme with more than usual stardust and sparkle.”

MediaGuardian Edinburgh International Television Festival takes place 24 – 26 August 2012. For further details visit www.mgeitf.co.uk

Taylor Herring PR + 44 (208) 206 5151

Notes to Editors

About The Advisory Chair

The Festival Advisory Chair is responsible for the editorial direction of the TV Festival’s programme – from commissioning session ideas to overseeing final production. Working closely with the Festival Office, the Advisory Chair brings together a committee from across the entire industry to advise and produce festival sessions.

Further Info about Kenton Allen

Prior to joining the BBC he was the Creative Director of Elizabeth Murdoch’s Shine Ltd which he joined from his role as Head of Entertainment Development at Granada TV. He began his Television career when Jonathan Ross invited him to leave the world of BBC Radio where he produced, amongst a diverse range of programming, Loose Ends for Radio 4 and Steve Wright In The Afternoon for Radio 1 to join one of the first wave of British Indies – Channel X Productions.

At Channel X he produced over 250 live editions of the comedy chat show Tonight with Jonathan Ross for Channel 4. At Big Talk Kenton leads a thriving and fast growing company that specialises in Drama, Comedy and Entertainment. He recently produced the BAFTA-winning Rev and BBC Three smash-hit Him & Her.

He is the Executive Producer of C4’s hugely popular Friday Night Dinner. Kenton also EP’s the entertainment series King Of… with Claudia Winkleman (Channel 4), Show Me The Funny (ITV), The Pranker (with Running Bare Films for BBC3), Chickens written by and starring Simon Bird, Joe Thomas and Jonny Sweet (C4) and brand new sitcom Threesome (Comedy Central UK).

In the USA, he is EP on Free Agents, a series for NBC starring Hank Azaria, based on the original Channel 4 series. Big Talk have also recently announced that Greg Daniels (The Office) will be adapting Friday Night Dinner, also for NBC.

He is married to the writer Imogen Edwards-Jones.

Final preparations underway for MGEITF 2011

Posted on August 24th, 2011 in Edinburgh International Television Festival,Event PR,Festival PR,Television Industry PR,Television PR.

EDINBURGH, Wednesday 24th August 2011: Final preparations are underway for the weekend’s 36th annual MediaGuardian Edinburgh International Television Festival, which boasts a line up of over 50 sessions that celebrate the year’s successes and address the current issues that face the industry.

For the full programme click here

Dr. Eric Schmidt, Executive Chairman of Google, will deliver this year’s MacTaggart lecture, discussing the unique role that Google occupies across global media and how TV business can engage with the giant of modern media. For the first time the speech will be streamed live via You Tube.

Danny Cohen, Peter Fincham, Jay Hunt, Janice Hadlow, Stuart Murphy and Jeff Ford will feature in the Controllers Sessions – each one providing an in-depth and informative look at what their channel has in store for viewers in the future, whilst answering audience questions. 

TV’s man of the moment, Professor Brian Cox, is the subject of the Alternative MacTaggart, in interview with Mariella Frostrup. The particle physicist will offer his analysis of TV as an enduring medium while offering up thoughts on the meaning of the Universe.

Comedy mogul Jon Thoday will give the Richard Dunn Memorial interview.  He will be opening up his extraordinary career in comedy management and production, discussing how he launched the careers of some of the UK’s best known comics.

Multi award-winning  Sky News reporter, Alex Crawford, will deliver the Worldview Lecture live via satellite link from Libya, focusing on recent events in the Middle East, and the changing role of news in growing, multicultural society.

The session ‘Chasing The Convergence Cash’ will set the scene for a major theme of the festival as broadcasting heavyweights chase new world operators like Facebook for revenue. Speakers will include Channel Four’s Chief Executive David Abraham and Ed Vaizey MP.

As Sky enters its third decade, the festival looks at the way the UK’s first satellite operator has revolutionised our television and the challenges it now faces as Britain’s biggest broadcaster. Speakers include David Wheeldon Sky’s Director of Policy & Public Affairs and Alan Rusbridger Editor In Chief, The Guardian.

In his first festival appearance for 6 years, Ricky Gervais talks about his TV career past and present while new entrant to the British comedy pantheon, Miranda Hart, will give a masterclass covering the creative process and exploring the future of comedy. Comic Strip writer Peter Richardson and producer Nick Smith will talk through the process of revising one of the nation’s best-loved comedy shows and updating it for a very different age.

Journalist and presenter Miriam O’Reilly joins a panel discussion examining the relationship between older women and television in Too Old for HD? The session will explore the different ways TV women have adapted – or not – with the changing face of television.

Actress Joanne Froggatt and Gareth Neame, executive producer of the massive ratings and critical success, Downton Abbey, will be deconstructing its popularity, examining its narrative structure as well as exclusively previewing the new series.

Sofie Gråbøl, star of hit Danish crime thriller, The Killing is joined by producer Piv Bernth to celebrate Sarah Lund, the cult following for the programme and everyone’s favourite jumpers.

Mark Wright and Sam Faiers, stars of ITV2’s multiplatform phenomenon and runaway success, The Only Way is Essex are joined by producers and commissioners to talk vajazzling, spray tanning, and the blurring of fact and fiction.

Glenn Brown, Director of Business Development at Twitter, will give The Futureview Address. Brown will be addressing the power of the medium to revolutionise the way TV viewers discover and interact with programming in real time. An additional session  The Only Way is Twitter…? will interrogate the ‘Twitter Effect’ by looking at the numbers and their real impact exposing top tweeters’ best practices.

With under a year to go until the start of the Olympics, the BBC’s Director of London 2012 Roger Mosey, will give a preview of what new technological and creative innovations we can expect as the BBC prepares to deliver the greatest show on earth – the Olympics – to our living rooms in 2012.

Some of the advertising world’s most creative people will share their revolutionary approach to audience engagement and a separate session looks at the world of product placement. Other highlights include; an investigation into bullying in the industry and an exploration into the international success of The Cube.

MGEITF kicks off with Family Fortunes as you’ve never seen it before. Vernon Kay will host this special edition of everyone’s favourite gameshow, with commissioning “families” from the BBC, ITV, Channel 4 and Sky, plus celebrity guests (including Lee Mack, Sam Faiers, Alan Carr and Sally Lindsay)  competing to demonstrate their superior understanding of TV audiences.

Presented by comedian Russell Kane, the Arqiva Channel of the Year Awards introduces three new awards this year; Cross Platform Innovation, Producer or Director Debut and Indie of the Year. A host of celebrity faces will help present the awards to the winners.

Screenings include; Sky 1’s new sitcom, SPY; The 9/11 Decade, an Al Jazeera film exploring how the CIA fought al Qaeda in the shadows, marking the tenth anniversary of the World Trade Centre attacks; Sky Atlantic’s first original comedy commission, This is Jinsy with Q&A; a screening of the new episode of BBC One’s Doctor Who; Syfy’s supernatural drama, Haven (Series 2 Episode 1- A Tale of Two Audreys); ABC’s highly anticipated, Once Upon A Time; and Channel 4’s comedy Fresh Meat, starring Jack Whitehall, with an introduction from the channel’s Head of Drama, Camilla Campbell.

For the full run down – visit the festival website at mgeitf.co.uk

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Press Contact: Taylor Herring PR

Notes to Editors:

  • Now in its 36th year, the MediaGuardian Edinburgh International Television Festival is the essential annual event for anyone involved in the media industry
  • A diverse programme of over 50 sessions including debates about important industry issues, future trends, glossy entertainment sessions and some of the most innovative leaders in the media delivering keynote speeches
  • The Festival is attended by over 1,500 delegates, representing the full spectrum of the industry – from chief executives, controllers and commissioners to producers, directors, marketers, writers, new media companies, distributors and press
  • A key part of the Festival’s charitable remit is encouraging and developing new talent from a diverse range of backgrounds, and it delivers on this aim through two talent schemes, The Network and Fast Track.  These schemes help over 100 young people each year to get in and get on in the media industry.
  • George Entwistle, Controller of BBC Knowledge Commissioning, is the 2011 Advisory Chair.
  •  For further details log on to www.mgeitf.co.uk

 


Google’s Schmidt to give MacTaggart lecture

Posted on April 11th, 2011 in Edinburgh International Television Festival,Event PR.

LONDON, Monday 11 April, 2011: Dr. Eric Schmidt, Executive Chairman of Google, will give this year’s MacTaggart Lecture at the MediaGuardian Edinburgh International Television Festival on Friday 26th August.

Dr Schmidt will be discussing the impact of the internet revolution and how the television industry can engage with new technologies.

Dr. Schmidt comments: It’s a great honour to be invited to give the MacTaggart lecture – the previous speakers are all incredibly impressive. I have always been a profound optimist about the potential for technology to improve people’s lives — though I am also a realist and understand it can be immensely disruptive in the process. So I look forward to discussing the opportunities and challenges ahead for the TV industry in Edinburgh.”

Instituted 36 years ago to open the annual MediaGuardian Edinburgh International Television Festival, the prestigious MacTaggart Lecture always attracts major names from both UK and international broadcasting, and is known for producing controversial and agenda-setting speeches.

Past MacTaggart speakers include Mark Thompson, James Murdoch, Dennis Potter, Michael Grade, Verity Lambert, Ted Turner, Greg Dyke, Peter Fincham, Charles Allen, Jeremy Paxman, John Mortimer and Rupert Murdoch.

Advisory Chair of the Festival, George Entwistle, comments: “Television was supposed to be dead and isn’t; on demand was supposed to have triumphed and hasn’t. It’s the perfect MacTaggart for an industry at the convergence crossroads, the Chairman of Google will give us a steer on the way ahead that no-one can afford to miss.

Executive Chair of the Festival, Elaine Bedell, comments: “This is the first time that the prestigious MacTaggart has been given to someone not principally involved in television broadcast or production. Eric Schmidt will give us a unique perspective on the future of the UK’s television industry, as well as an insight into the global ambitions of the internet-based giant, Google.”

Since joining Google in 2001, as Chief Executive Officer, Dr. Schmidt has helped grow the company from a Silicon Valley startup to a global leader in technology. Under his leadership, Google dramatically scaled its infrastructure and diversified its product offerings while maintaining a strong culture of innovation.

In his newly appointed role as Executive Chairman, Dr. Schmidt will be responsible for the external matters of Google including building partnerships and broader business relationships, government outreach and technology thought leadership, as well as advising the CEO and senior leadership on business and policy issues.

Prior to joining Google, Dr. Schmidt was the Chairman and CEO of Novell and Chief Technology Officer at Sun Microsystems, Inc., where he led the development of Java. Earlier in his career, Dr. Schmidt was a member of the research staff at Xerox Palo Alto Research Center (PARC), Bell Laboratories and Zilog.

Dr. Schmidt holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Electrical Engineering from Princeton University as well as a Master’s Degree and Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of California, Berkeley. Dr. Schmidt is also a member of the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology, and the Prime Minister’s Advisory Council in the U.K.

He was elected to the National Academy of Engineering in 2006 and inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences as a fellow in 2007. He also chairs the board of the New America Foundation.

Registration for the 2011 MGEITF is now open. The early bird rate of £500 + VAT is currently available until 24th June. Click here for more information www.mgeitf.co.uk

Twitter fans – follow the Festival @edinburghtvfest

Notes to Editors

Now in its 36th year, the MediaGuardian Edinburgh International Television Festival is the essential annual event for anyone involved in the media industry

A diverse programme of over 50 sessions including debates about important industry issues, future trends, glossy entertainment sessions and some of the most innovative leaders in the media delivering keynote speeches

The Festival is attended by over 1,500 delegates, representing the full spectrum of the industry – from chief executives, controllers and commissioners to producers, directors, marketers, writers, new media companies, distributors and press

A key part of the Festival’s charitable remit is encouraging and developing new talent from a diverse range of backgrounds, and it delivers on this aim through two talent schemes, The Network and Fast Track.  These schemes help over 100 young people each year to get in and get on in the media industry.

MediaGuardian Edinburgh International Television Festival 2011 takes place 26-28 August. George Entwistle, Controller of BBC Knowledge Commissioning is the Advisory Chair.

For further details log on to www.mgeitf.co.uk

 

Edinburgh Television Festival Programme Announced

Posted on May 12th, 2010 in Edinburgh International Television Festival,Event PR,Television Industry PR,Television PR.

LONDON, Wednesday 12th May 2010: The 35th annual MediaGuardian Edinburgh International Television Festival announces an impressive line-up of creative and industry luminaries. The Festival will take place from August 27 – 29 at the Edinburgh International Conference Centre.

Edinburgh is the first stop on the media calendar following the general election, and BBC Director General Mark Thompson’s MacTaggart will set the agenda for the weekend in what promises to be a pivotal year for the BBC. The festival weekend will feature sessions examining what the new government will mean for media, and what role television had to play in the most unpredictable election in recent memory.

MarkThompson

BAFTA award-winning screenwriter and producer Paul Abbott will deliver the Alternative MacTaggart Lecture entitled The Truth About Long-Term Thinking.

Abbott commented: “I’m thrilled to be giving the Alternative McTaggart Lecture because I believe it’s an exciting time to comment on the British TV industry’s reaction to, and performance since, the credit crunch.”

PaulAbbott

Mark Austin interviews former ITV executive chairman, Michael Grade while new Doctor Who showrunner, Stephen Moffat and award-winning producer, Andy Harries will both deliver Masterclasses. Channel Four’s newly appointed Chief Executive David Abraham is also confirmed to attend the festival.

daleks_matt_smith

And don’t plan to leave early – tabloid star Katie Price will be revealing what makes her tick in a revealing, live interview on Sunday.

katie price

New regime, new reality. The BBC has already laid out plans for major changes, but will more savage cuts be coming their way? What should they cut, and what deserves protecting? The Festival audience will decide in a session entitled Build Your Own BBC, chaired by Jeremy Vine. There will also be a special, Edinburgh edition of Question Time which will feature those new to power, and in opposition.

jeremy vine

For the first time, MGEITF delegates will be able to pose their questions via Twitter to channel controllers who will be revealing their priorities and looking ahead to 2011. Controllers who have already confirmed to take part include Jay Hunt (BBC One), Janice Hadlow (BBC Two), Peter Fincham (ITV1), Julian Bellamy (Channel 4), Richard Woolfe (Five), Danny Cohen (BBC Three), Richard Klein (BBC Four), Stuart Murphy (Sky1), Paul Mortimer (E4), Zai Bennett (ITV Digital), Hamish Mykura (More4) and Matthew Littleford (UKTV).

JayHunt

MGEITF’s opening session will embrace the dance fever that is sweeping the nation by staging a festival version of the Sky 1 HD show, Got To Dance. Six teams — from one solo tap dancer to a 20-strong dance crew — from channels and leading independent producers will perform an array of dances from hip hop to jazz and ballet to street. Each performance will be critiqued by the judges Ashley Banjo, Kimberley Wyatt and Adam Garcia who will award those iconic red and gold stars – with the winner decided by a live audience vote.

got to dance

In a landmark year for British soaps, MGEITF are celebrating 50 years of Coronation Street and 25 years of EastEnders. For Coronation Street – festival goers will be taken on a trip down memory lane. Masterclass line-up includes writer and creator Tony Warren, actress Kate Kelly and journalist Nancy Banks Smith. Producers will reveal how potent plots and sizzling storylines continue to excite and engage audiences young and old. Discover the secrets of writing, producing and directing and learn how Eastenders skillfully tackles social taboos time and time again, helping to create defining moments of television. And find out how this year, the production pushed the boundaries even further ‘simply’ by keeping a secret, and producing its first ever live episode, watched by 17 million people.

katherine-kelly

Millions watched the debates and the election night shows live on TV whilst tweeting and following online – it brought social media out of teenage bedrooms and into the living room. MGEITF will reveal how can broadcasters and producers harness the social power of Twitter and Facebook to drive deeper engagement and build bigger audiences in a session chaired by prolific tweeter @richardpbacon.

bacon

There will also be the unique chance to grill some of Fleet Street’s most prolific TV pundits including Ally Ross and Ian Hyland in a Meet The Critics session chaired by Endemol’s Tim Hincks.

With 3D TV now a reality in the UK, MGEITF will be dedicating a number of sessions to the subject which will explore different genres and budgets, a step-by-step guide on how to produce in 3D, a debate on how 3D could change and reinvigorate the popularity of various genres, plus a showcase of the latest 3D content and kit.

MGEITF has teamed up with the UK’s leading games conference, Edinburgh Interactive, so delegates can swap ideas with leading figures in the games industry. In How To Get Into Games gaming commissioners will be pitched ideas by TV producers and TV commissioners will be presented with ideas from games producers in order to learn what each thinks is important in a good entertainment proposition.

The Channel of the Year Awards will be jointly selected by the Festival’s Executive Committee and a live vote during the ceremony, hosted by top funny man Jack Whitehall on Saturday, August 28 at The Festival in Edinburgh.

Bringing a bit of light comic relief to the closing session of the festival is The Last Laugh – a talent search for the funniest person in the TV industry. MGEITF will pair up some of the biggest names from behind the camera and some of the funniest people behind the scenes, with the nation’s top comics. Which top execs will join Jon Snow in trying their hand at stand up? Comedians who have agreed to mentor TV industry talent include Shappi Khorshandi, Russell Kane, Sarah Millican, Mark Watson, Steve Amos, Pete Johanssen and Kevin Bridges.

Deborah Turness, 2010 MGEITF Advisory Chair and Editor of ITV News, said: “In keeping with our times this year’s Festival will be a coalition of agenda-setting content that will shape the direction of the industry and inspirational, creative stimulation. With the Conservative/Murdoch Alliance now in Number 10, Mark Thompson’s MacTaggart could not be more timely. The big question: will David Cameron demand “savage” cuts at the BBC, and is radical change coming our way? While the festival is about addressing key industry issues, it is also about celebrating and learning from our top creative talent and we are delighted that Paul Abbott has agreed to deliver the Alternative MacTaggart Lecture.”

Tim Hincks, MGEITF Executive Chair and CEO of Endemol UK, added: “When it comes to media events in 2010 Edinburgh is convincingly first past the post yet again. The best producers, celebrities , channel controllers and broadcasters will all be there , making it absolutely unmissable. Miss once, regret for an eternity.”

This is just a taste of the amazing line-up for 2010, with many more sessions still to be announced.

The MediaGuardian Edinburgh International Television Festival is a delegate entry event which annually attracts over 2000 delegates from all sectors and levels of the industry. To find out more, and to register, please visit www.mgeitf.co.uk

MGEITF Press Information: Taylor Herring PR Tel: +44 208 206 5151

Mark Thompson Confirmed To Give MacTaggart Lecture at MGEITF

Posted on May 4th, 2010 in Edinburgh International Television Festival,Event PR,Festival PR,Television Industry PR,Television PR.

LONDON, Tuesday 4th May 2010: BBC Director-General Mark Thompson will give this year’s MacTaggart Lecture at the MediaGuardian Edinburgh International Television Festival.

MarkThompson

Instituted 34 years ago to open the annual Edinburgh International Television Festival, the prestigious MacTaggart Lecture always attracts major names in UK and international broadcasting and is known for producing controversial and agenda-setting speeches. Past MacTaggart speakers include James Murdoch, Dennis Potter, Michael Grade, Verity Lambert, Ted Turner, Greg Dyke, David Liddiment, Peter Fincham, Charles Allen, Jeremy Paxman, John Mortimer and Rupert Murdoch.

Mark Thompson, Director General, BBC said; “In what is a big year for the BBC as well as the rest of the broadcasting industry, it’s a great privilege to be asked to give the MacTaggart Lecture, and I’m looking forward to it.”

Deborah Turness, 2010 MGEITF Advisory Chair and Editor of ITV News, said, “Edinburgh is the first stop on the media calendar following the general election, and the MacTaggart will once again set the agenda for the weekend. In what promises to be a pivotal year for the BBC, I am delighted that Mark has agreed to share his vision with the Edinburgh audience.”

Tim Hincks, MGEITF Executive Chair and CEO of Endemol UK added, “It’s a real coup that the BBC’s top man has agreed to share his vision about the future of the corporation at Edinburgh . It will undoubtedly be one of the key media events of 2010.”

The MacTaggart Lecture will take place on Friday 27th August at 6.45pm.

Mark Thompson was appointed Director-General of the BBC in 2004, after being Chief Executive of Channel 4 since December 2001. He had previously worked at the BBC for more than 20 years, becoming Director of Television in April 2000, responsible for the management and running of all BBC network television channels. Mark Thompson was previously Director of National and Regional Broadcasting, responsible for all broadcasting activities in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland and for local and regional broadcasting in England.

He joined the BBC in 1979 as a production trainee, helped launch Watchdog in 1981 and Breakfast Time in 1983 and he also worked on London Plus before becoming an output editor on Newsnight in 1985. He was appointed Editor of the Nine O’Clock News in 1988 and Editor of Panorama in 1990.

Thompson became Head of Features in 1992 and Head of Factual Programmes in 1994, playing a key role in the successful performance of BBC One and BBC Two and introducing series such as Animal Hospital, Modern Times, The House and Ready Steady Cook. As Controller of BBC Two from 1996 to 1998 he saw the channel retain its share of viewing at a time of increased competition. During this period BBC Two won acclaim for its drama (Our Mutual Friend, The Cops, Amongst Women, Shooting The Past), its entertainment and comedy (I’m Alan Partridge, The Fast Show, The Royle Family, Big Train), and its factual, arts and leisure programmes (The Nazis – A Warning From History, Storyville, Naked, Back To The Floor, Ground Force). He was a member of the BBC’s Charter Review Task Force on Entertainment in 1991; the Programme Strategy Review team, led by Alan Yentob and Liz Forgan, in 1993; and he chaired the Edinburgh International Television Festival in 1996.

Registration for the 2010 MGEITF is now open. The early bird rate of £425 + VAT is currently available until 22 June. Click here for more information www.mgeitf.co.uk.

Festival Press Contact: Taylor Herring PR +44 208 206 5151