5 Things We Learnt from Channel 5 Controller Ben Frow
This morning Ben Frow gave an insight into his role as controller at Channel 5, to give those looking to get commissioned an understanding of how the channel makes important decisions on new programmes. Here’s what we discovered:
1. Ben Frow described Channel 5 as “unashamedly populist” and understanding what Channel 5 represents is key to getting your idea commissioned.
2. A catchy title isn’t just a necessary hook for the viewer. Ben Frow revealed that “It’s fairly well-known that I can commission on a title alone”. He explained that “titles are very important” because they determine whether or not the programme has been positioned specifically for Channel 5.
3. Be reactive to breaking news and current affairs. Ben Frow asked “what can we do to make us stand out?” and suggested that the ability to respond quickly to hot topics in the news is one way of setting Channel 5 apart.
4. Channel 5 seeks out new talent! Ben Frow “loves giving new people a chance” when the idea itself is robust enough to support the calculated risk of endorsing new talent.
5. Channel 5 has around a third of the yearly budget of Channel 4. Ben Frow discussed budgeting restrictions and stated that, “a good idea made by enthusiastic people, scheduled in the right way, called the right thing, can make a world of difference.”