Sunday, April 13, 2008

BBC News Revamp

Seems the BBC is rolling out a £550,000 rebranding exercise that will result in Saturn-style spheres parading across television screens at home and abroad and colour-coded opening titles for news bulletins in England, Scotland and Wales.

The move is part of the broadcaster’s biggest attempt yet to repackage its core output. As part of the changes, News 24, its rolling news channel, is being renamed BBC News. The corporation will rebrand BBC World, their international news channel, as BBC World News. Viewers will be able to judge the new look for themselves on April 21.

The BBC revamp is aimed at unifying its news output – across television, radio and the internet - with a consistent, recognisable look. It aims to connect regional, national and international news programmes through a common brand.

There will be new opening titles for shows on the main channels, such as the BBC1 10 O’Clock News. Instead of a red globe on a black background, audiences will see a globe surrounded by pulsating rings, reminiscent of the planet Saturn, set against a white backdrop.

Regional news bulletins will follow a similar format but will have splashes of blue in the opening titles in Scotland, green in Wales and white in news programmes across England, such as Look North and Midlands Today.

The 10 O’Clock and One O’Clock News programmes will share a new “crisp and modern” studio with the BBC’s rolling news channel – placing presenters such as Huw Edwards and Fiona Bruce behind a more formal oval-shaped desk.

The £550,000 cost of the BBC’s latest revamp of its news output is a bargain compared with previous rebranding exercises. In 2006, the broadcaster spent £1.2m on eight short clips based around a circle theme to link shows on BBC1. A clip featuring a surfer was shot on location in Mexico, while another so-called “ident” of fishermen piecing together a giant moon was filmed in Croatia.

The clips replaced a series of BBC1 idents from 2002 featuring Bollywood dancers and tangoing couples which cost £700,000.

Last year, BBC2 splashed out another £700,000 on 14 promotional clips lasting less than four minutes in total.

The idents featured the number 2 in a variety of settings to show the channel as a “window on the world”. Three were shot in South Africa because film-makers said they needed sunny weather.

Extracts above were taken from this Sunday Times article.

There is a great site with an overview of all the previous BBC idents. I really hope they don't go back to the old rings (above) which reminded me of Nazi SS insignia (see below). And I wonder how this latest move to "BBC World News" will affect the feature programmes currently on BBC World. Will they have to be more of a "news" magazine feel? BBC World has been taken off the cable system here in this part of the Netherlands. They couldn't agree on payments apparently.

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