Channel 4 has announced a slate of new documentary commissions for 2019 that dig deep into the sites of power and decision-making across public bodies and private enclaves, encompassing stories that are both profoundly intimate and state of the nation. Cop Control (w/t) has gained unprecedented access to the Control Room of the country’s largest policing area- sitting in on the frontline of the Force’s response. Placing viewers at the heart of critical choices is also central to The Decision (w/t) a series that provides unique insight into the challenges mental health trusts and patients have to deal with. The Bankers Fortress (w/t) lifts the lid on the engine room of global finance, the City of London while Inside Missguided (w/t) follows one of the UK’s biggest retailers as it attempts to recoup its fortunes after a major setback. And the long running documentary series Born To Be Different catches up with some familiar faces as they turn 19, and once again offers bold and deeply personal accounts of living with a disability.
Cop Control (w/t) 8x60’
This series goes inside the nerve centre of policing, the Command and Control Unit – colloquially known as Force Control. Filmed over a six-week period in the largest geographical policing area in England and Wales - Devon and Cornwall –the series will present a 360-degree view of one force’s attempt to meet the most pressing policing needs at a time when the system is under more pressure than ever. With violent and complex crimes on the rise across the UK, an increasing number of emergencies, and fewer resources to deal with them, every episode will show the critical decisions that the control room team make each day. The series will shed fresh light on the changing face of law and order in modern Britain.
Production company- Optomen
Helen Crampton – Series Edit Producer
Executive Producer – Amelia Hann and Nick Hornby
Series Producer – Charlotte Wassermann
Senior Producer/Director- Chris Rowe
Commissioning Editor- Alisa Pomeroy
The Decision (w/t) 4x60’
This series gains access to Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, one of the UK’s largest mental health trusts. With demand rising and resources stretched like never before, this series will explore the unprecedented pressure on mental health services and the seemingly impossible decisions that clinicians have to make every day. The series will place viewers at the heart of the complex decision-making process, giving a unique insight into the pressures and challenges mental health trusts and patients have to deal with daily. Told with a frank first person perspective, this series will give a very personal view of mental illness in 2019; the tragedy, humour and complex challenges.
Production Company- Story Films
Executive Producers- Adam Hopkins, Peter Beard and David Nath
Series Producer- Sophie Jones
Commissioning Editors- Charlotte Desai and Rita Daniels
The Bankers’ Fortress (w/t) 1x60’
Broadgate -the 32-acre complex in the City of London- is at the centre of Britain’s global banking empire. Billions flow through here every day. Behind the walls of this vast financial fortress, bankers, CEOs, cleaners and security guards rub shoulders every day. But locked inside their parallel worlds, they almost never interact. Made over two years, this film takes us inside the lives of the men and women who populate Broadgate – from the richest to the poorest. When the construction of the Broadgate began in 1986, Margaret Thatcher broke the ground. Broadgate was to become the epicentre of her ‘Big Bang’ free market revolution. The film traces Broadgate’s story, finding out how Thatcher’s free market experiment delivered unimagined wealth for some – and then squandered it. And how today, in the wake of the financial crash and Brexit, Thatcher’s office complex is looking to rise once more.
Production company- Halcyons Heart Films
Executive Producer-–Simon Ford
Producer/Camera –Laura McCutcheon
Director –Joseph Bullman
Commissioning Editor- Danny Horan
Inside Missguided (w/t) 4x60’
With exclusive access, this series explores the dizzying growth and frenzied expansion of Missguided -one of the UK’s largest online fashion retailers and reveals what life is like for their young, female dominated workforce. Nitin Passi, the company’s maverick owner, saw his Manchester based company go from zero turnover to over 200 million a year. But after eight years of enormous success, Missguided lost £26 million in 2017/2018. The series will follow the brand as they double down their efforts and attempt a glitzy comeback – spending more than ever before to bring the business back to glory in 2019. Opening marquee stores, sealing multi-million-pound collaboration deals with A-List celebrities and continuing to do battle with its fashion house rivals.
Production company- Pulse Films
Executive Producers- Nelesh Dhand, Jon Alwen and Sharyn Mills
Commissioning Editors: Rita Daniels and Fozia Khan
Born To Be Different 1x60’
The long running observational documentary series returns for another instalment. First commissioned in 2000, this documentary project began following the lives of 6 children, each born with a disability, and the impact that has on them and their families. In this latest episode -the first since 2016- we catch up with Hamish, Emily, Zoe, William and Shelbie, now turning 19 and taking their place in the world as adults.
Production Company- Ricochet
Executive Producer- Joanna Ball
Producer- Cat Green
Producer/Director- Laurence Turnbull
Commissioning Editor- Fozia Khan
Danny Horan, Head of Factual at Channel 4, said: “Our country is fast changing and more complex and our institutions are under more pressure. We have a duty to tell these stories and reflect people’s lives and experiences. Getting deep access into institutions is at the heart of what we do - whether it’s a police force having to make critical decisions where to place their resources, a NHS Trust deciding a priority of mental health needs or a multimillion pound fast fashion business that is feeding the hunger for the latest trends. They are often the bellwether of our society.
“I’m also thrilled to announce two new eye opening and heart rending films which form part of the greater strategy for Channel 4 - to be the home of documentaries.”