Channel 4 Entertainment has moved into the reality space with an ambitious new reality competition show narrated by Bafta winning and Golden Globe nominated actor James McAvoy.
The Bridge will see 12 strangers come together, on the banks of a picturesque lake in the British countryside, totally clueless as to what awaits them. Ready for adventure and excited by the unexpected, they will face an epic challenge that requires teamwork and trust in order to achieve the common goal of winning £100k.
The prize pot lies out of reach on an island 250 metres away from where the contributors are based. To reach it, they must work together to build a bridge in 20 days. If the group successfully work as a team and reach the cash before the deadline, overcoming a series of surprise twists in the process, each of them will get a vote for who they think is the most deserving of the life changing prize. The winner is then left with the trickiest decision of all – will they keep all the money or share it?
Based on a format originally created by Zeppelin, a Banijay Iberia company, the show is being made by Manchester based Workerbee and filmed regionally. The five-part Channel 4 series is set to be the ultimate test of mental skill, physical agility and group dynamics as the strangers live together in the beautiful British countryside. Commissioned by Channel 4 Entertainment it will air later this year.
Phil Harris, Head of Entertainment at Channel 4 said, “This is such an exciting first reality commission for me and the Channel 4 entertainment department. The brilliant Workerbee have conjured up the entertaining twists, comedy and drama viewers associate with classic channel 4 reality, against what might be considered a traditionally more factual backdrop.”
Steve Handley, Commissioning Editor at Channel 4 said, “Filmed in the backdrop of the wide open spaces of the glorious UK countryside that many of us have been dreaming of in recent months this entertaining and utterly engaging new reality series is bound to start many conversations about just how far we would each go to secure £100k.”
Rick Murray, Managing Director for Workerbee, said, “The Bridge is an innovative and ground-breaking factual entertainment format and we’re thrilled to be making it for Channel 4 from our HQ in Manchester. Pulling together a show of this nature and scale in the current environment has been no mean feat but we’re raring to go and it is going to be fascinating to see if this cross section of people can work as a team even after months of lockdown.”
Michelle Chappell, Creative Director for Workerbee, added, “Making The Bridge during a global pandemic has been an incredible achievement, but nowhere near as mind-boggling as building a bridge to win £100k! We’re looking forward to bringing Channel 4 viewers a treat for the senses in this distinctive new series.”
Warren Smith, Executive Producer for Workerbee added, “After months of lockdown, a group of strangers have come together to tackle an intense challenge. We aim to find out whether they will work in harmony or will ruthless behaviour play a part in securing the £100,000 winnings? Filmed in the British countryside, we will demonstrate that you do not have to travel abroad to find beautiful locations, they exist on our doorstep.”
The Bridge was commissioned for Channel 4 by Steve Handley, Commissioning Editor for Entertainment and Phil Harris, Head of Entertainment. It is a Workerbee production and the Executive Producers are Warren Smith, Rick Murray and Michelle Chappell. The series is being filmed following strict Covid-19 production guidelines.
The Bridge made its international debut in Spain in 2017 and aired for two successful series on Movistar+’s #0 where it is known locally as El Puente. The format also sold to France with M6.
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Notes to Editors
Channel 4 is a publicly-owned yet commercially-funded public service broadcaster and has a remit to be innovative, experimental and distinctive. Its public ownership and not-for-profit status ensure all profit generated by its commercial activity is directly reinvested back into the delivery of its public service remit.
As a publisher-broadcaster, Channel 4 is also required to commission UK content from the independent production sector and currently works with around 300 creative companies across the UK every year.
In addition to the main Channel 4 service, its portfolio includes: E4, More4, Film4, 4seven, Channel4.com, streaming service All 4 and The Box Plus Network, including 4Music.