Thursday, January 23, 2014

Upgraded exterior filming resource

See, if, say, Sid Hardball was one of Lord Hall's new no-nonsense non-executives, EastEnders luvvie Dominic Treadwell-Collins would have got nowhere with his new outdoor set strategy.

Sid: Let's be clear - you want a new outdoor set, yet you also want a full-scale temporary set for two years, while you muck about with the one that's served you ok for close to 30 years. What's the problem here ? Isn't the East End supposed to be run down ?

DTC:  We need a set that's 20% bigger to enable greater editorial ambition and improve working conditions for staff. Crucially, it will provide a greater sense of scale with more locations for our characters to spend time in, opening up new areas and opportunities that haven’t been possible before – all of which are in the best interest of our viewers.

Sid: And do you have a dossier of complaints from viewers that there aren't enough outdoor scenes ?  Was that a "no" ? Have you visited the East End recently ? Have you heard of "urban renewal", maybe seen a few building sites, eh ? Wouldn't a cost-conscious producer like you see the benefit of a few storylines that get the scaffolding in ? Developers, new social housing, chip-pan fires, Victorian sewer collapses, that sort of thing...

DTC: The BBC is currently exploring legacy options for the long-term use of the temporary set including visitor tours and educational opportunities.

Sid: So people are going to pay to see a set that's no longer the real EastEnders set ? Gimme a break. How much is this costing ?

DTC: We have an independent review which has highlighted the importance of the show to audiences and to the BBC as a whole, and supports investment in the exterior lot.

Sid: OK mate, but I'm not going in front of Ma Hodge on this one..It's your call, Lord Hall. Next case, Ms Bulford.

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