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Kenton Allen appointed as Advisory Chair for MGEITF 2012.

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

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.


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