MediaGuardian Edinburgh International Television Festival « Taylor Herring

MediaGuardian Edinburgh International Television Festival

ITN’s Deborah Turness Becomes MGEITF 2010 Advisory Chair

Posted on October 12th, 2009 in Edinburgh International Television Festival,Television Industry PR,Television PR.

Monday October 12, 2009: London – Deborah Turness, Editor of ITV News, has been appointed 2010 Advisory Chair of the MediaGuardian Edinburgh International Television Festival Advisory Committee, taking over from 2009’s Chair Elaine Bedell.


As Chair, Turness will be responsible for the editorial direction of the 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.

Turness has been Editor of ITV News since 2004 and is the first female editor of network news in the UK and the youngest editor of ITV News. In 2008 she received the “Women in Film and Television” New and Factual Award. This month her programmes have won an Emmy for coverage of the Chinese earthquake and a BAFTA earlier this year for the same story. Previously, she has presided over a series of scoops and world exclusives including video of the arrest of the London bombers, the leaked report on the shooting of innocent Brazilian Jean-Charles De Menezes and exposing the extent of Charles Kennedy’s drink problem for which ITV News won Scoop Of The Year at the 2007 RTS Awards. Under her leadership ITV News has made history when they became the first news organisation to anchor whole programmes from Antarctica in 2007.

Prior to joining ITV News, Turness was Deputy Editor of ITV News and Deputy Editor of Five News. She was also ITN’s Washington Bureau Producer during the Clinton White House years, spent time in Bosnia during the Balkans War and was North of England producer. Turness began her career at ITN as a freelance producer in the Paris Bureau.

Tim Hincks, Executive Committee Chair 2010 and Chief Executive, Endemol UK, said: “I’m delighted Deborah is going to be Edinburgh’s advisory chair next year. It’ll be a pretty quiet year for her – what with running the ITV news operation, ITV’s election coverage and now the UK’s premier multimedia event, but she’s a force of nature and I know will deliver a brilliant Edinburgh.”

Turness, added: “I am very pleased to have been invited to chair next year’s Festival. Elaine Bedell produced an excellent, headline-grabbing Festival this year, and I am looking forward to working with the committee to create some equally newsworthy, compelling and entertaining sessions next year.”

Previous advisory chairs have included Elaine Bedell, ITV’s Director of Entertainment & Comedy; Andrew Mackenzie, C4 Head of Factual Entertainment; Alison Sharman, ITV’s Director of Factual and Daytime. Tim Hincks, Chief Executive of Endemol UK, Celador’s Head of Factual Entertainment Murray Boland, Tiger Aspect’s Charles Brand, Cheetah Television’s Creative Director Sara Ramsden, ITV’s Director of Global Content Dawn Airey, BBC Director General Mark Thompson and Discovery USA’s Jane Root.

This year’s MediaGuardian Edinburgh International Festival attracted delegates not only from the UK but across the globe from South Africa to Finland, the USA and Australia. The Festival is a charitable organisation which also runs two free talent schemes — The Network and Fast Track — helping young people from a diverse range of backgrounds to get in and get on in the industry. 2009 saw both schemes attract a record number of applicants.

Comedian Russell Howard was the opening night speaker for the Network and then delegates participated in workshops and masterclasses from amongst others the stars and writer of The Inbetweeners (Simon Bird, James Buckley and Iain Morris), Charlie Brooker, Jay Hunt and Julian Bellamy.

Two Fast Track delegates walked away with commissions from UKTV Dave at Fast Track’s live pitch; Sam Ward from Tiger Aspect and freelancer Rob Holloway. They both received a £15,000 commission for 3×3′ programmes which are due to be delivered in April 2010.

The Network and Fast Track are funded through the MGEITF, with approximately one-third of delegate fees going towards these schemes.


Notes to Editors:


Click here for more information

A unique opportunity for individuals from across the media to share ideas, make new contacts and reconnect with friends and colleagues, the MediaGuardian Edinburgh International Television Festival offers delegates a varied programme of topical debates, one to one networking opportunities, Masterclasses and Keynote Lectures from leading UK and international media figures. The Festival programme is developed by an Advisory Committee made up of individuals from across the industry. 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. MGEITF is a charitable organisation which supports and develops new talent from all backgrounds through its two talent schemes, The Network and Fast Track. Approximately one third of the delegate fees go towards supporting these initiatives.

MGEITF Press Information/press accreditation:
Taylor Herring PR. Tel: + 44 (0)208 206 5151

Fast Track Your TV Career

Posted on May 28th, 2009 in Edinburgh International Television Festival,Television Industry PR.


Have you been working in TV for 2-4 years? Are you full of ideas, passion and drive?

Then sign up for Fast Track to gain exclusive access and guidance from some of the biggest names in the TV buisness.

Fast Track – the talent initiative of MediaGuardian Edinburgh International Television Festival (MGEITF) – opens for applications and nominations today for its FREE event which runs alongside the TV Festival.

Applications close 12 June 2009.

Contact: h[email protected]

Stellar Line-up for Edinburgh International Television Festival 2009

Posted on May 21st, 2009 in Edinburgh International Television Festival,Event PR,Television Industry PR.

LONDON, Wednesday 20 May 2009: The 34th annual MediaGuardian Edinburgh International Television Festival launches today at The Hospital Club with an impressive line-up of creative and industry luminaries.

The Chairman and Chief Executive of News Corporation, Europe and Asia, James Murdoch will give the MacTaggart Lecture, the BBC’s RTS award-winning Business Editor Robert Peston will give the Richard Dunn Memorial Lecture and Peter Fincham, Director of Television, ITV will interview Ofcom’s Ed Richards.

In 2009 the television industry is at a pivotal point of change. This year’s Festival will look at new revenue models, changing technology and the state of the global television industry. Delegates will explore how to make programming that keeps viewers engaged after the recent controversies around taste and decency as well as gain insight and practical tips from other industries in these challenging times. As the world experiences the biggest economic downturn in decades; the programme of events will also explore how the industry is coping with the credit crunch. The Festival runs from 28 – 30 August 2009.

Gerhard Zeiler, CEO of RTL Group is confirmed to give the Worldview Address and provide his unique insight into the state of the global television industry.

ITV stars Ant and Dec will take a break from their television presenting duties for a unique Alternative MacTaggart. The duo will be joined by Amanda Holden and surprise special guests to check out who in the industry actually has got talent in the festival opening session, TV’s Got Talent – Edinburgh Special.

The Wire creator, David Simon, notorious showbiz blogger Perez Hilton, the Top Gear team and actor Ross Kemp are also confirmed to give Masterclasses.

2009 marks a decade since the launch of the world’s most notorious reality TV experiment. The headline session 10 Years of Big Brother: How Reality Has Changed TV will explore the influence, history and controversy surrounding the Channel 4 juggernaut.

Controllers from all the major channels including Jay Hunt (BBC One), Janice Hadlow (BBC Two), Peter Fincham (ITV1), Julian Bellamy (Channel 4), Richard Woolfe (Five) and Stuart Murphy (Sky One) will be discussing their channel highlights and looking ahead to 2010.

Ashley Highfield, MD and VP, Consumer and Online, Microsoft UK and former BBC new media boss, will present this year’s Futureview Address, sponsored by MTV Networks. The session will explore cutting-edge issues in technology and their effects on the broadcasting and media industries.

New in-depth research about the BBC’s iPlayer will be exclusively released at this year’s Festival; providing the first insight into the popularity of the iPlayer and look at how performance affects commissioning and audience behaviour.

There will also be an important session on advertiser funded programming which will look at the exciting new opportunities for programme makers, channels and brands. Ed Vaizey MP, Shadow Culture minister, joins a panel of industry experts to explore the issues.

Channel of the Year Awards will be hosted by comedy star Michael McIntyre with winners chosen by a live audience vote on the night. Voting ends this Friday, 22 May 2009. To register your vote visit:

Elaine Bedell, 2009 MGEITF Advisory Chair and Director of Entertainment and Comedy ITV, said: “The line-up for this year’s Festival is even more impressive than before. At a time when the television industry is facing cutbacks and budgetary constraints, it is vital that the industry joins together to consider its future position and the Edinburgh International TV Festival is the ideal place for this to happen.”

Tim Hincks, MGEITF Executive Chair and CEO of Endemol UK, added: “We have secured yet another stellar line-up to ensure that 2009 will mean a great Edinburgh. It just goes to show that the Festival is the one media event you simply can’t afford to miss.”

This is just a taste of the amazing line-up for 2009, with more than 30 sessions still to be announced.

For MGEITF Press Information: Debra Johnson or Nicola Dann, Taylor Herring PR
Tel: +44 (0)20 8206 5151. Email: [email protected]

Fincham To Interview Ofcom Chief at MGEITF 2009

Posted on May 18th, 2009 in Edinburgh International Television Festival,Television Industry PR.

LONDON,  Monday 18th May 2009; Ed Richards, Chief Executive of Ofcom, will be in the hot seat at this year’s MediaGuardian Edinburgh International Television Festival, which takes place from 28-30 August 2009.

ed-richardsRichards will be interviewed by ITV’s Director of Television Peter Fincham, who last year criticised Ofcom for being out of touch with viewers and argued that over regulation could ‘kill television’, in the Festival’s MacTaggart lecture.

Since becoming CEO in 2006, Richards has come under increasing scrutiny from broadcasters and the media alike as he maps out Ofcom’s vision for Public Service Broadcasting and a Broadband Britain. The Q&A will address the key issues surrounding these policies and is guaranteed to be a dynamic debate and a session not to be missed at the festival.

Prior to joining Ofcom, Richards was Tony Blair’s senior policy advisor for media, telecoms, the internet and e-government. He also served as the BBC’s controller of corporate strategy. Richards began his career as a researcher with Diverse Production Ltd where he worked on programmes for Channel 4.

Elaine Bedell, Advisory Chair of the MediaGuardian Edinburgh International Television Festival Advisory Committee, said: “We feel it’s essential that the industry’s regulator is held to account at Edinburgh, television’s key festival. And we want to make sure we address the important issues of Public Service Broadcasting, Broadband Britain and regulation – and what better way to do this than a lively debate with Peter who was publicly critical of the regulator at this festival last year.”

This year’s MediaGuardian Edinburgh International Festival has already announced James Murdoch, chairman of Newscorp as this year’s MacTaggart and Robert Peston, who will deliver the Richard Dunn Memorial Lecture as well as a Masterclass from the highly acclaimed writer of The Wire, David Simon.

Registration for the 2009 MGEITF is now open. The early bird rate of £425 + VAT is currently available until June 30. Click here for more information

MGEITF Press Information:
Debra Johnson, Taylor Herring PR. Tel: 0208 206 5151 [email protected]

Robert Peston Confirmed For Edinburgh Keynote

Posted on May 11th, 2009 in Edinburgh International Television Festival,Television Industry PR.

LONDON, May 11, 2009: BBC News Business Editor Robert Peston will give the Richard Dunn Memorial Lecture at this year’s MediaGuardian Edinburgh International Television Festival, which takes place 28-30 August.

peston_onset_203_21Peston, a respected business journalist who became a household name with his reporting of the current financial crisis, is to deliver the high-profile Richard Dunn Memorial Lecture. The far reaching lecture will take stock of the impact the global recession has had on our economy and media industry – and will look at the responsibilities and challenges for television in reporting the credit crunch. He will also reflect and comment upon his own, influential, role in the eye of the storm.

Peston is in charge of business and city coverage across TV, Radio and online for the BBC. As the credit crunch has unfolded, he has been an almost constant presence on TV and radio news programmes including BBC Radio 4’s Today Programme and BBC News at Ten – and his award-winning blog has become a must-visit website.

Peston, who was previously Financial editor and Political editor of the Financial Times, and City editor of the Sunday Telegraph, has swept the board in this year’s business journalism awards, most notably winning the RTS “Journalist of the Year 2009”, RTS “Specialist Journalist of the Year 2009” and RTS “Scoop of the Year” for breaking the Northern Rock Crisis story.

The Richard Dunn Memorial Lecture previous speakers include Jamie Oliver, Simon Cowell and Gerry McCann.

The Richard Dunn Memorial Lecture will take place during the Festival weekend. Robert Peston joins a strong line-up of speakers including The Wire creator David Simon who is set to deliver a Masterclass. This year’s MacTaggart Lecture will be given by James Murdoch, Chairman and Chief Executive, Europe and Asia, News Corporation, and Chairman of BSkyB.

Press contact: Debra Johnson, Taylor Herring PR. Tel: 0208 206 5151 or [email protected]

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