Factual Entertainment

Factual Entertainment aims to explore both us and our world in a vivid, entertaining way.

Our primetime shows have scale, and aim to grab viewers with their ambition, whilst engaging them with compelling narratives.
The Great British Presenters colourful aprons and hats
The Great British Bake Off

Our department is home to a vast range of programming, including some of the biggest titles in the portfolio such as The Great British Bake Off, Married At First Sight, Gogglebox, and Celebrity Hunted. Our incredibly varied output ranges from highly constructed formats to social experiments to observational documentary.

The School That Tried to End Racism
The School that Tried to End Racism

What unites pretty much everything we make, is character-driven story-telling, and a desire to reach a broad audience.

If you have a new idea that you think might work for us, we would love to hear from you. You can email any of the team below, direct - and we will reply promptly. We will happily look at anything from a fully-worked up treatment, to a one-line email.

Our current main priorities – as of March 2022 - are as follows:

RETURNABLE IDEAS FOR 9PM

Budgets are idea-dependent, with no fixed upper limit. The kinds of returnable we are looking for include:

INCREDIBLE CONSTRUCTS

We want ideas for epic, audacious new constructs. Think Married At First Sight, Hunted, The Island or The British Tribe Next Door. Ideas should be simple to describe, but open up fresh new worlds of dramatic possibility.

Nikita in wedding dress with Ant holding hands
Married at First Sight

60 Days on the Street
60 Days on the Street

DISTINCTIVE WORLDS

We welcome ideas for fresh worlds or casts that we might follow, such as our upcoming series The Academy [wt], following talented kids as they try to make the cut at the ferociously competitive youth team at Crystal Palace FC. Previous successes in this vein include Child Genius and The Undateables. Other brilliant examples from other channels are Ru Paul’s Drag Race, and Dragon’s Den. We welcome both arced and self-contained episode ideas.

The British Tribe Next Door
The British Tribe Next Door

RETURNING TALENT

We welcome ideas based around presenters who could become returnable franchises in their own right, as Guy Martin is, and Richard Ayoade was for so long with Travelman. Examples on other channels include Louis Theroux, Ben Fogle, and the brilliant combo of Gordon, Gino & Fred.

We are currently piloting one-offs with various well-known faces with the potential to become additional fixtures of our schedule, but welcome further ideas. And we are also seeking ideas for ‘gang shows’ that feel like they have distinctiveness and purpose, as well as entertainment, at their core.

SPECTACLE & EVENT

We seek dramatic event pieces, with enough scale to grab attention and cut through the schedules.

What else could rival Guy Martin’s Wall Of Death for drama and bravery? Or Harry’s Heroes for pathos and humour. Or Race Around The World as a setting to explore relationships.

 

REVEALING STUNTS & DARING SOCIAL EXPERIMENTS

At a recent unscripted briefing Ian Katz issued a call for stunts so audacious that he would be risking his job to commission them. They must have a revealing purpose, and say something important about our times.

Smuggled asked ten ordinary Brits to smuggle themselves into the country from abroad without their passports, with shocking results. The School That Tried To End Racism sparked debate in Parliament about what should and shouldn’t be taught in schools. And Joe Lycett Vs The Oil Giant was a full-frontal critique of Shell’s misleading advertising. Whilst our deep fake homage to Her Majesty, The Alternative Christmas Message, elicited outrage and delight in roughly equal measure.

We’re looking for more thought-provoking, mischievous and challenging proposals that explore important issues ….

The Alternative Christmas Message

ALL 4 DRIVING IDEAS FOR 10PM

As the channel pivots to the digital future, 10pm has become increasingly important.

What could complement Naked Attraction? Or our upcoming Global Format Fund commission, Open House: The Sex Experiment, a dramatic social experiment where loving couples nervously open up their relationships to other partners, with the help of a therapist?

Dating feels like an ever-more crowded territory, so anything in that space would probably have to be truly extraordinary to stand out. But if you have a compelling twist, we would love to hear it.

We also welcome ideas for completely different subject matters, and are particularly interested in ideas for studio-based, self-contained episode formats.

 

ACCESS

Kathy Burke Money
Kathy Burke Money

We always want new access – whether to well-known people or places. We are very happy to work with you to shape an idea, if you have access but aren’t quite sure what to do with it.

The bar is high: ideas need to have genuinely broad, mass appeal. But we would love to commission more celebrity-authored docs like our brilliantly opinionated Kathy Burke series, or Johnny Vegas’s joyous glamping adventure. We are also looking for more celebrity-focused singles, like last year's Caroline Flack: Her Life and Death.

Caroline Flack: Her Life and Death
Caroline Flack: Her Life and Death

And we also want more pop docs and series about well-known companies or institutions. Successes in the past have included Cadburys and Poundland.

Gogglebox
Gogglebox

To make sure we are inclusive and accessible to all, please let us know if you require any adjustments or assistance for meetings and communications with you.

Kevin McCloud fence geometric 1-storey slate coloured building
Grand Designs

 

Head of Factual Entertainment: Alf Lawrie

based in London

SENIOR TEAM ASSISTANT: Kate O'Bryan

alawrie@channel4.co.uk

Commissioning Editor: Ian Dunkley

based in London

GENRE ASSISTANT: Amy Hopewell

idunkley@channel4.co.uk

Commissioning Editor: Daniel Fromm

based in Bristol

GENRE ASSISTANT: Amy Hopewell

dfromm@channel4.co.uk

Commissioning Editor: Tim Hancock

based in London

SENIOR TEAM ASSISTANT: Kate O'Bryan

thancock@channel4.co.uk

Commissioning Editor: Lee McMurray

based in London

GENRE ASSISTANT: Amy Hopewell

lmcmurray@channel4.co.uk

Commissioning Editor: Vivienne Molokwu

based in London

SENIOR TEAM ASSISTANT: Kate O'Bryan

vmolokwu@channel4.co.uk

Assistant Editor: Rachel Martin (Maternity Leave)

based in London

CONTACT: 020 7306 3748

rmartin@channel4.co.uk

Assistant Editor: Michelle Shaw

based in London

mshaw@channel4.co.uk

Senior Team Assistant: Kate O'Bryan

based in London

CONTACT: 020 7306 6912

kobryan@channel4.co.uk

Interim Programme Coordinator: Amy Menzies

based in London

CONTACT: 020 7306 3614

amenzies@channel4.co.uk

Genre Assistant: Amy Hopewell

based in London

CONTACT: 020 7306 5595

AHopewell@channel4.co.uk