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Billy Smart

This category contains 36 posts

Directed by Douglas Camfield: Z Cars 1967-69 (BBC1)

  A new biography written by Michael Seely, Directed by Douglas Camfield, is published this week by Miwk Books. Camfield (1931-84) was one of British television’s great directors, but the combined factors of his early death and the unavailability of many of his productions have left both the man and his works being only partially … Continue reading

‘The Frighteners: The Manipulators’ (LWT 1972): A contemporary review

The Frighteners, the first title in our new ‘Forgotten TV Dramas’ DVD range (in association with Network Distributing) went on sale today. Little seen (even at the time!), not much was ever written about the series, but while researching the Viewing Notes I did come across this perceptive review of Mike Hodges’ episode The Manipulators … Continue reading

‘Sunday Night Theatre: The Hotel in Amsterdam’ (ITV/ ATV 1971): In conversation with Anthony Page and Nicholas Wright at BFI Southbank.

The second ‘Television’s Forgotten Dramas’ season at BFI Southbank was launched on 2 February 2017 with a screening of John Osborne’s The Hotel in Amsterdam, followed by a discussion about the play, John Osborne, and forgotten television drama more generally, with Anthony Page (the play’s original director, of both stage and TV versions) and playwright … Continue reading

‘Forgotten TV Drama’ DVD range launched in association with Network Distributing Ltd.

We are pleased to announce the launch of a new range of ‘Forgotten TV Drama’ DVD titles drawn from the ITV Archive. The range will be curated by the ‘History of Forgotten Drama in the UK’ team at Royal Holloway and released by Network Distributing Ltd. The first title will be The Frighteners, London Weekend Television’s … Continue reading

The BBC Television Audience Research Reports and BBC Scotland Drama, 1964-82: Recorded Opinions and Invisible Expectations

Between the 1950s and the 1980s, the BBC’s internal Audience Research Unit compiled up to 700 television Audience Research reports per year, attempting to cover the complete spectrum of BBC TV programming. What I’m going to do today is consider the value of this material, in relation to my own work on the development of … Continue reading

‘Forgotten Television Dramas 2’ at BFI Southbank: ‘Play of the Month: Loyalties’ (BBC 1976)

Our second ‘Forgotten Television Dramas’ season concludes at 3.15 on Sunday afternoon with a screening of John Galsworthy’s ‘Loyalties’, unseen since 1976. The screening will be introduced by actor Edward Fox. Along with his many film and theatre credits over the last fifty years, two of Edward’s television appearances made soon after Loyalties demonstrate his … Continue reading

‘Forgotten Television Dramas 2’ at BFI Southbank: ‘Sunday Night Theatre: The Hotel in Amsterdam’ (ATV/ ITV, 1971)

  Our second ‘Forgotten Television Dramas’ season launches at 6.00 this evening with a screening of John Osborne’s ‘The Hotel in Amsterdam’, unseen since 1971. A full article about this play (and a later 2004 BBC production) can be found on our blog here. The screening will be followed by a discussion with the play’s … Continue reading

‘Forgotten Dramas 2: Rediscovering British Television’s Neglected Plays’ Season at BFI Southbank: February 2017

We are pleased to be able to announce details of the second ‘Forgotten Dramas: Rediscovering British Television’s Neglected Plays’ season, held at BFI Southbank this February, curated by Lez Cooke, John Hill and Billy Smart as a part of the AHRC-funded ‘History of Forgotten Television Drama in the UK’ project at Royal Holloway College, University … Continue reading

Finding a fragment of a lost television drama: The last seven minutes of ‘Play of the Month: The Magistrate’ (BBC1 20 December 1972)

Researching old television drama is often an archaeological process. When programmes don’t survive, a trained historian and theorist can sometimes pick up (and hopefully convey) some idea of what they might have been like through secondary sources.

About the Project

This is the official blog of the ‘History of Forgotten Television Drama in the UK’ project, Royal Holloway College, University of London. This 3-year AHRC-funded project will explore why many television dramas made in the regions and nations of the UK between 1946 and 1982 have been ‘forgotten’ while others have been elevated to the … Continue reading

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