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Noel Edmonds' 'Deal Or No Deal' To End On Channel 4 After 11 Years


Noel Edmonds Channel 4

Channel 4 game show ‘Deal or No Deal’ has been axed after 11 years and over 3,000 episodes. Presented by Noel Edmonds the show was hugely popular in its early years and at one time attracted more than 4 million viewers. However ratings have fallen steadily in recent years, with it now attracting an audience of just around 300,000.

Noel Edmonds‘Deal or No Deal’ host Noel Edmonds

A TV insider told The Mirror: “'Deal Or No Deal' doesn’t get the ratings it used to and it is not a cheap daytime show to make. Noel and ‘Deal’ had a great run but bosses have just decided it is the right time to end the series.”

Continue reading: Noel Edmonds' 'Deal Or No Deal' To End On Channel 4 After 11 Years

Gogglebox Family Apologises Over "Misjudged" ISIS Joke


Channel 4

The Siddiqui family from Channel 4’s Gogglebox have apologised, after a relative made a joke about ISIS on Facebook which resulted in a police investigation. Baasit Siddiqui said he was sorry for any offence the joke may have caused, saying it was intended to be light hearted.

Gogglebox Siddiqui familyThe Siddiqui family

Baasit’s brother Raza Siddiqui had uploaded a photo of the three dressed in camouflage during a paint balling game to Facebook with the caption, “Isis training day, look how happy we look!” While friends of the family then also made jokes in the comments, one user reported the image to police.

Continue reading: Gogglebox Family Apologises Over "Misjudged" ISIS Joke

O2 Customers Get Priority On 'All 4' Shows, Including Peep Show


David Mitchell Channel 4

As part of a new brand partnership, O2 Priority customers will get access to new Channel 4 shows before they’re shown on TV – that includes Peep Show, Fresh Meat and the hit reality show Made in Chelsea. As part of the new deal, the O2 logo will also be plastered onto All 4 content (All 4 replaces 4oD).

GoggleboxGogglebox has been a big hit for Channel 4

David Amodio, Channel 4’s Digital and Creative Lead said, “This collaboration with O2 is the most exciting digital partnership in Channel 4’s history.”

Continue reading: O2 Customers Get Priority On 'All 4' Shows, Including Peep Show

Ofcom Clears Channel 4's Benefits Street: Regulator Is "Satisfied" With Editorial Justification


Channel 4

Channel 4’s Benefits Street, a documentary surrounding the inhabitants of James Turner Street in Birmingham, has been cleared by the regulator Ofcom after complaints of the negative and offensive way benefits claimants were represented in the 5-part series.

Benefits Street"White Dee" was a popular if not controversial figure on Benefits Street

The show was one of the most talked about of Channel 4’s output. With benefits and poverty a sore subject for many Brits, the way in which crime and fraud was so explicitly depicted in the documentary series saw many complain that Love Productions were exploiting their subjects to create a debate and therefore draw attention, manifestly increasing the show’s viewership. 

Continue reading: Ofcom Clears Channel 4's Benefits Street: Regulator Is "Satisfied" With Editorial Justification

Flood Of Complaints Causes 'Benefits Street' Ofcom Investigation


Channel 4

The highly popular, contentious and controversial Channel 4 documentary Benefits Street, which highlights the travails of those living on James Turner Street, Birmingham, is due to go under investigation by Ofcom after attracting over 1700 complaints.

Benefits StreetBenefits Street has attracted severe criticism

The first episode attracted the most vitriol, with the general public incensed at the level of crime shown in the program, including the main participants removing tags from clothes and lining bags with foil to avoid detection when shoplifting goods.

Continue reading: Flood Of Complaints Causes 'Benefits Street' Ofcom Investigation

Crime Dramas 'The Fall,' 'Broadchurch' And 'Top Of Lake' Dominate Broadcasting Press Guild


David Tennant Chiwetel Ejiofor Channel 4

'The Fall,' 'Broadchurch' and 'Top of The Lake' - arguably the three biggest dramas of 2013 – have each received four nominations at the Broadcasting Press Guild Awards, proving their dominance with the critics and within TV conversations last year.

Elisabeth MossTop of The Lake's Elisabeth Moss

They’re all up for Best Drama, but David Tennant and Olivia Colman are in line for individual acting nods for their respective roles. Top of the Lake's Elisabeth Moss and Peter Mullan, and The Fall's Gillian Anderson also compete.

Tennant will go up against Bafta award winning Chiwetel Ejiofor, star of 12 Years a Slave, in the lead male category. He’s in the running for his part in BBC Two’s Dancing on the Edge. While Tennant’s role as DI Alec Hardy in Broadchurch - a role he’s currently reprising in an American remake - has landed him a spot on the short list.

Top of the Lake's Jane Campion, Broadchurch's Chris Chibnall, and The Fall’s  Allan Cubitt are all nominating for writing awards as the Broadcasting Press Guild is dominated by Channel 4 and BBC 2 – the former of which took all four documentary nominations in best single documentary prize.

Broadcasting Press Guild Awards - full list of nominations

Continue reading: Crime Dramas 'The Fall,' 'Broadchurch' And 'Top Of Lake' Dominate Broadcasting Press Guild

Gogglebox Moves To Friday Nights, 9pm. And Yes, The Drunk Couple Are Back


Channel 4

'Gogglebox,' the surprise Channel 4 fly-on-the-wall show capturing members of the public as they watch the week's television, is returning for a new series on Friday nights at 9pm. The first episode is expected to see the Goggleboxers reaction to the Oscars, The Voice, The Taste and Saturday Night Takeaway.

Steph Dom GoggleboxSteph [L] and Dom [R] in 'Gogglebox'

"We make each episode from scratch every week, never knowing what we are going to get," Channel 4's head of specialist factual David Glover said. "I love the fact that it's so funny, and I love that the show feels warm, but maybe most of all I love the fact it feels like a little bit of truth.

Continue reading: Gogglebox Moves To Friday Nights, 9pm. And Yes, The Drunk Couple Are Back

Benefits Street's Second Season Will See A Geographical Change


Channel 4

There’s good news and bad news, for people who think Benefits Street is an exploitative exercise, designed to be divisive in spite of the damage it has done to the residents of James Turner Street, playfully – and damagingly – coined Benefits Street.

Benefits Street Series 2 Residents have been portrayed in a negative light

The bad news: Benefits Street is getting another series. Love Productions and Channel 4 have confirmed this. The good news: it won’t focus on Birmingham any more, giving the cash-strapped locals a chance to breath after the media spotlight was firmly gazing down on them and their habits.

Continue reading: Benefits Street's Second Season Will See A Geographical Change

"Poverty Porn" Benefits Steet Residents To Speak Out In Live TV Debate


Richard Bacon Channel 4

Channel 4’s serialised documentary Benefits Street has been criticised from many corners. Some have been moved to condemn those featured in the show, while others have labelled Channel 4 and Love Productions as exploitative and irresponsible for putting the residents of James Turner Street into the public eye.

Benefits StreetSam and Becky were widely criticised for their role in supposed benefits fraud

But the residents of the street – who, despite many wishing death upon them and calling hem scum, scroungers and benefits cheats – are the innocent part in all this, and they’ll have the chance to speak their minds on a live debate to be aired after the final show on February 10th. It will be chaired by Richard Bacon.

Continue reading: "Poverty Porn" Benefits Steet Residents To Speak Out In Live TV Debate

Would You Buy A House On Benefits Street?


Channel 4

Channel4’s documentary, ‘Benefits Street’, which follows the impoverished residents of James Turner Street as they duck and dive to make a living, making some pretty startling admissions along the way, enraged half the population of the U.K. Primary gripes included: the people on the show being alive, claiming benefits and being lazy.

Benefits Street'White Dee' is a resident of the street

Presumably, the people complaining were doing so from their iPads on a DFS sofa their parents are still paying off after 4 years interest free. But that’s by the by. Following the doc, which has been condemned by many commentators – including those who were featured on the show - as being exploitative, house prices have dropped on the now-infamous road.

Continue reading: Would You Buy A House On Benefits Street?

Channel 4's 'Benefits Street' - The Most Idiotic Tweets


Channel 4

Channel 4 know what they’re doing, and running documentary that showcases the intricate workings of one of the U.K’s most impoverished areas while 2014 is set to be a’ year of cuts’ is certainly one way to arouse debate. Sorry, free marketing.

Benefits Street FungiFungi - a resident of James Turner Street in Winson Green - caused controversy with his exploits

But the transparent nature of Channel 4’s ostensibly exploitative documentary was lost on many, who, instead of trying to understand why some parts of Britain face abject poverty while other thrive in affluence and why a television network would risk the welfare of a group of deprived individuals, decided to Tweet horrible things.

Continue reading: Channel 4's 'Benefits Street' - The Most Idiotic Tweets

The Most Ridiculous Dogs From Channel 4's 'Doggy Styling'


Channel 4

This year's festive TV schedule is packed with the regular annual drama specials, feel-good family films and classic TV shows resurrected from the past for a ratings jolt, but on December 30th, the oddest of all the Christmas TV is aired - Doggy Styling, on Channel 4

Every year, America's most ardent dog stylists come together at the world's largest grooming event in Hershey, Pennsylvania, which is generally considered the the Olympics of creative grooming.

But if you thought dog styling would find its limits with seriously smooth hair, dreadlocks and intricate patterns, you'd be wrong; these dog groomers have pushed the art to its very limits, creating the most absurd characters on their beloved pooches. 

Continue reading: The Most Ridiculous Dogs From Channel 4's 'Doggy Styling'

Step Up Brits! Immigrants Are Tougher, Says Jamie Oliver


Jamie Oliver Channel 4

According to Jamie Oliver, European immigrants living in the U.K have more steel about them than the natives. His comments, which are likely to anger a portion of right-leaning Brits, come before his new show, which is designed to get poor families eating better food.

Jamie OliverShould I have said all this... out loud? Yes - Jamie Oliver

"British kids particularly, I have never seen anything so wet behind the ears!” he explained. "I have mummies phoning up for 23-year-olds saying to me, 'My son is too tired'. On a 48-hour-week! Are you having a laugh?" he added to Good Housekeeping (via The Telegraph).

Continue reading: Step Up Brits! Immigrants Are Tougher, Says Jamie Oliver

'Southcliffe': When Did Sunday Night TV Become So Brilliant And Bleak?


Rory Kinnear Sean Harris Channel 4

Remember when Sunday nights were about watching Heartbeat and worrying about having to go back to the school in the morning? The final night of the week threw up some easy-watching though pretty bad television as Britain lurched into yet another working week.

However, things have beginning to change. Across the pond, Mad Men and Breaking Bad are signature shows airing on Sundays, while UK channels are beginning to move some of their biggest and most exciting dramas to 9pm on Sundays. 

Last night, Channel 4's harrowing drama Southcliffe finally hit screens after a couple of weeks of pretty eerie looking teaser promos. The show focuses on a mentally unstable local man (Sean Harris) who goes on a killing spree in a quiet British seaside town. The excellent Rory Kinnear plays a detective investigating the heinous crimes.

Continue reading: 'Southcliffe': When Did Sunday Night TV Become So Brilliant And Bleak?

ITV To Purchase 24 Hours In A&E Company The Garden For £18 Million


Channel 4

ITV has agreed to purchase the independent TV production company The Garden for £18 million, Televisual.com reports today (April 22, 2013). The company, which produces innovative documentaries such as 24 Hours in A&E and The Audience for Channel 4 will now be bought for the considerable sum, by ITV, who will then make a further cash payment, depending on performance, over the next five years.

The Garden was originally launched in 2010, by Magnus Temple and Nick Curwin. Since its inception, the company has developed a reputation for creating high quality documentary series, mainly for the BBC and Channel 4. It includes programmes such as Seven Dwarves and Keeping Britain Alive amongst its successes. In 2011, ITV signed a joint development deal with The Garden, as part of its endeavours to work with new talent within the TV industry. The managing director of ITV Studios, Kevin Lygo, commented “The Garden has grown rapidly and achieved an enviable reputation for outstanding delivery of innovative, ambitious documentary series for the BBC and Channel 4. A key focus for ITV is to develop hit programmes which we can then export globally and The Garden already has an impressive track record.”

Speaking on behalf of The Garden, Temple and Curwin commented “We have a trusting, creative and fruitful relationship with ITV Studios, having previously joined forces to bolster our development efforts… Being part of ITV will help us grow further in the UK and, in particular, to achieve our international ambitions. We will be working more closely with ITVS whilst continuing to concentrate as hard as ever on our important relationships with Channel 4 and the BBC." 

ITV To Purchase 'Seven Dwarves' Company The Garden For £18 Million


Channel 4

ITV has agreed to purchase the independent TV production company The Garden for £18 million, Televisual.com reports today (April 22, 2013). The company, which produces innovative documentaries such as 24 Hours in A&E and The Audience for Channel 4 will now be bought for the considerable sum, by ITV, who will then make a further cash payment, depending on performance, over the next five years.

The Garden was originally launched in 2010, by Magnus Temple and Nick Curwin. Since its inception, the company has developed a reputation for creating high quality documentary series, mainly for the BBC and Channel 4. It includes programmes such as Seven Dwarves and Keeping Britain Alive amongst its successes. In 2011, ITV signed a joint development deal with The Garden, as part of its endeavours to work with new talent within the TV industry. The managing director of ITV Studios, Kevin Lygo, commented “The Garden has grown rapidly and achieved an enviable reputation for outstanding delivery of innovative, ambitious documentary series for the BBC and Channel 4. A key focus for ITV is to develop hit programmes which we can then export globally and The Garden already has an impressive track record.”

Speaking on behalf of The Garden, Temple and Curwin commented “We have a trusting, creative and fruitful relationship with ITV Studios, having previously joined forces to bolster our development efforts… Being part of ITV will help us grow further in the UK and, in particular, to achieve our international ambitions. We will be working more closely with ITVS whilst continuing to concentrate as hard as ever on our important relationships with Channel 4 and the BBC." 

Continue reading: ITV To Purchase 'Seven Dwarves' Company The Garden For £18 Million

Is 'My Mad Fat Diary' The New Inbetweeners?


Channel 4 The Inbetweeners

My Mad Fat Diary, a new comedy based on the diary entries written by Rae Earl, premiered on E4 on Monday evening (January 14, 2013) to near unanimous praise from critics. It follows the story of a 16-year-old, 16-stone girl, who leaves a psychiatric hospital where she has been treated for four months. She begins looking for love and finds herself hanging out with five 'cool kids', Izzy, Archie, Chloe, Chop and Fim.

The 6-episode series, starring Sharon Rooney, is being talked up as one of the funniest British shows of 2013, with The Guardian's TV critic Sam Wollaston serving up a glittering review. "It's lovely - honest and painful, real and very funny. There's something of Adrian Mole about MMFD, but it's maturer (because Rae is 16, and because she's a she)," he wrote, adding, "There's something of The Inbetweeners about it too, but with lady hormones fuelling the language, the filth, and Rae herself." The Independent's Brian Semple was more concerned with My Mad Fat Diary's positive portrayal of mental illness, writing, "It's rare for a teen TV drama to tackle mental illness, and rarer still that it manages to do so with both sensitivity and a sense of humour... That's why the new E4 series My Mad Fat Diary, which started tonight, marks a genuine highpoint in the way mental illness is represented on screen." The television series is likely to spark conversation in all walks of life, which can only be a good thing.

My Mad Fat Diary continues on Monday (January 21, 2013) on E4.

£2 Million For 24 Minutes: The Painstaking Creation Of Snowman And The Snowdog


Channel 4

At 24 minutes long and costing £2 million, the amount of work that has gone into producing The Snowman The Snowdog is mind-melting. It’s no wonder that Channel 4 have poured so much promotional energy into the sequel to the 30 year old original The Snowman. 200,00 individual drawings have been “painstakingly” put together by 40 artists, Radio Times reveal, many of whom worked on the original.

Raymond Briggs, the creator of The Snowman has reportedly given his approval to this ostentatious effort at a follow-up and the co-producer, Ruth Fielding has said “The look of the film is based on his original drawings.” Explaining the detailed process that has gone into creating the new show, they reveal that an animator has drawn the characters in pencil and that image has then been coloured with Caran d’Ache crayons (at an expense of £14,000). Using this process, a team of two is able to create five seconds of animation in a week.

The same Snowman features in the sequel as we saw in the original, but is now joined by a Snowdog. Their adventures see them flying over London and on towards the North Pole. It’s a tear-jerker, too, so don’t forget the Kleenex if you’re planning on helping Channel 4 bosses breathe a huge sigh of relief and watching it. Even Joanna Harrison, who co-wrote the story says the ending makes her cry. Though we reckon a 14 grand crayon bill is enough to make anyone weep.

Big Fat Gypsy Wedding Adverts Branded ‘Offensive’ In ASA Review


Channel 4

Channel 4’s ‘Bigger, Fatter, Gypsier’ adverts, for their Big Fat Gypsy Wedding have been ruled ‘offensive,’ after a renewed investigation into claims that they racially demeaned the travelling community and exposed their children to bullying and abuse. In February, the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) judged that the adverts were unlikely to cause serious or widespread offence and claimed that the adverts reflected the content of the programme.

An independent review was ordered, however, after the Irish Traveller Movement in Britain (ITMB) complained that the adverts were racially demeaning. In the review, the ASA took advice from the Equality and Human Rights Commission and found that the adverts featuring teenagers wearing low-cut tops, in a “sexualised” way, could enforce prejudicial views against the gypsy and traveller community and were likely to cause ‘serious’ offence to some members of that community, The Telegraph reports. The review has also ruled that Channel 4 acted irresponsibly when they took the decision to depict a child in a sexualised manner.

A statement from the ASA said “We understood that the photo was an accurate depiction of how the young women had chosen to dress for the occasion at which they had been photographed and we considered that it was clear that they were dressed for a night out. However, we noted that they were heavily made-up and wearing low cut tops and we considered that, when combined with the strapline and in particular the word "Gypsier", the ad implied that appearance was highly representative of the gypsy and traveller community in a way that irresponsibly endorsed that prejudicial view and was likely to cause serious offence to the gypsy and traveller community." The ITMB have called for a full apology from those responsible for creating the adverts.


Bear Grylls Breaks Shoulder After Antarctic Fall


Bear Grylls Channel 4

Television adventurer Bear Grylls has suffered a broken shoulder while taking part in a charitable expedition in Antarctica.

The 34-year-old presenter fell while climbing an ice mountain on a trip to promote the use of alternative energies as bio-fuels.

Details of the accident have not been confirmed but the former SAS soldier is thought to have been airlifted to safety.

The father-of-two will be treated in South Africa - a seven-hour flight away from Antarctica - before returning to the UK, it is believed.

A spokesman for the Channel 4 wild man confirmed Grylls was "in a lot of pain".

"He is calm and collected - but in pain," he was quoted by the Daily Mail as saying.

"It is par for the course for the sort of thing that Bear does - this was a dangerous trip."

A statement from the Discovery Channel - for whom Grylls presents the Man vs Wild show - confirmed he had been taking part in an expedition for Ethanol Ventures to promote the potential of alternative energies like bioethanol.

"Bear has a strong religious faith and a loving family to help speed his recovery," the network said.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with Bear as he makes the long trip back to the UK."

Grylls' programmes - which typically see him stranded in remote areas - attracted controversy last year after it was admitted that some segments had been cleverly edited.

Channel 4 later apologised for misleading audiences and said all future programmes would be "100 per cent transparent", adding: "All elements of the filming will be explained upfront to our viewers."

Continue reading: Bear Grylls Breaks Shoulder After Antarctic Fall

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