Thursday, February 02, 2006
I must confess I have been very pleasantly surprised. Last year the European Broadcasting Union decided to work with the European Commission to create radio, TV and web material addressing the major health issues facing us across Europe. Rather than just doing a PR job, the money was given to radio and TV producers working in public broadcasting with complete artistic licence to do what they thought fit. Today, at the RTBF, the French-language HQ of Belgium's public service broadcaster, we saw the (almost) finished result. They are beautiful pieces of work, especially the film on Obesity from Bayrische Rundfunk and a French language production on mental health called "The Madman Next Door". The reason they succeed is that the money has been used to allow documentary makers to travel and compare. The results are confrontational - yet the productions are beautifully filmed and scripted. I've been helping with the radio productions - and there is potential that these will be good too.