Channel 4 continues its Paralympics legacy one year on
The coverage includes: July’s IPC Athletics World Championships 2013 from Lyon, France; theSainsbury’s Anniversary Games in London and August’s IPC Swimming World Championships 2013, broadcast from Montreal, Canada. Earlier this year it was announced that Channel 4 had secured the UK broadcasting rights to the 2014 Paralympic Winter Games in Sochi and the 2016 Paralympics in Rio de Janeiro.
Channel 4’s ground-breaking coverage of the 2012 Paralympics, which reached almost 40 million people, won two BAFTAs: for Best Sport and Live Event, and for Digital Creativity.
Channel 4 Sports Editor Jamie Aitchison said: ‘We look forward to enjoying more Superhuman performances on Channel 4 throughout the summer and reacquainting ourselves with the likes of Jonnie Peacock, Hannah Cockcroft and David Weir. Being World Champion at any sport is an incredible achievement so Lyon kicks off a fantastic period of Parasport in the coming months.’
The world’s top athletes, including our British stars, will be competing in the IPC Athletics World Championships 2013, as they begin preparing for the 2016 Paralympics in Rio. This is the first major international gathering since London 2012, with 1300 athletes expected in Lyon coming from 90 countries. Daily live coverage is at 1415 – 1915 (BST), 20 – 27 July on More4 – presented Jonathan Edwards and Arthur Williams and with a team of top commentators John Rawling, Rob Walker, Katharine Merry and Danny Crates.
Marking a year since the unforgettable London 2012 Paralympics, on 28 July the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in London will once again be host to the finest international athletes at the Sainsbury’s Anniversary Games. Ade Adepitan and Clare Balding will reunite on Channel 4 to present the coverage of the third and final day of the Sainsbury’s Anniversary Games – the Sainsbury’s International Para Challenge – which showcases the Paralympic champions of 2012. Live coverage will go out on 28 July in the afternoon (exact times to follow).
Clare Balding said: ‘I’m delighted that one year on, everyone will be able to catch up with their Paralympic heroes and heroines of London 2012.’
Ade Adepitan said: ‘Being part of Channel 4’s Paralympics presenting team last year was a real honour and I’m so proud to be back celebrating the sporting achievements of 2012 at the Sainsbury’s Anniversary Games. I’m expecting some amazing performances and audiences full of pride and adrenalin – just like our British athletes.’
The IPC Swimming World Championships 2013 will take place in Montreal 12 – 18 August. Paralympic champions Ellie Simmonds and Josef Craig are expected to compete alongside over 650 of the world’s finest swimmers from more than 60 countries. Viewers will get the best of the action online and on Channel 4, presented by Ned Boulting, along with former Paralympian swimmers Giles Long and Rachael Latham.
The coverage for the Parasport events will be produced by Sunset+Vine, part of the BAFTA-award-winning production team behind Channel 4’s London 2012 Paralympics coverage.
Gary Franses, Executive Producer for Sunset+Vine said: ‘At the last IPC World Athletics Championships in 2011, Channel 4 produced a one-hour highlights show of the entire event. Now, just two years on, they are showing 40 hours of live coverage. This reflects not only the increasing influence Channel 4 holds in the sport, but also the increasing appetite for athletics that they have created amongst the viewing public. Sunset+Vine is thrilled to play its part in this success story.’
Channel 4 one year on
Building on the legacy of its game-changing Paralympics coverage, in 2013 Channel 4 also continues its commitment to giving platforms to disabled voices and talent.
Fifty percent of Channel 4’s 2012 Paralympics presenting talent were disabled, which was a new approach to covering the Games and reflected Channel 4’s established history of featuring disabled people.
Audience research carried out for Channel 4 around the Paralympics 2012 showed that two thirds of viewers feel the coverage of the Paralympics has had a favourable impact on their perceptions towards people with disabilities and also disabled sport. 80% of viewers enjoyed the fact that there were disabled presenters on screen in and 74% liked the matter of fact discussions about disability Channel 4’s coverage of the Paralympics.
This year sees new projects and presenting features along with the return of successful series on Channel 4:
- As well as returning to present the Sainsbury’s Anniversary Games, peak time Paralympics presenter Ade Adepitan has also became a reporter for Channel 4’s award-winning foreign affairs strand Unreported World continues to work with News and Current Affairs on the upcoming Ade Adepitan: Journey of My Lifetime (Ronachan Films), exploring why Nigeria is the only remaining country in Africa still to eradicate polio.
- After launching with huge success into a Friday night slot on Channel 4, the award-winning gang show The Last Leg (Open Mike) returns for a third series on 31 July as well as a Christmas special – to be fronted by Adam Hills alongside fellow stars of the 2012 Games, Alex Brooker and Josh Widdicombe.
- Arthur Williams, who Channel 4 trained as part of its 2012 Paralympic ‘boot camp’ of new presenters and who played a major role in anchoring coverage of the Games, fronts major new factual project – Mosquito: The Wooden Wonder (w/t) (August). As part of the documentary, pilot and plane-enthusiast Williams will discover the truth about the unsung hero of World War Two – the Mosquito – and will fly the only airworthy example of the plane in the world.
- Alex Brooker will front a one-off documentary in late July about the changing relationship between men and weight loss in Alex Brooker: Man V Fat (w/t) (Mentorn Media) – as part of the First Cut strand, nurturing new directing talent (dir. Eddie Hutton-Mills).
- As well as the roles for Williams, Adepitan and Brooker, a number of the ‘boot camp’ presenters are exploring new opportunities at Channel 4 and with other broadcasters and production companies including Jordan Jarrett Bryan, who is working as a sports reporter for Channel 4 News, Martin Dougan who has recently presented for Newsround and is filming with I’m Spazticus; and Rachael Latham, who is working with a number of production companies on new production developments and presenting opportunities.
- The critically acclaimed series The Undateables (Betty) has been recommissioned for a third series, following the journeys of several extraordinary singletons as they enter the dating circuit in pursuit of love.
- I’m Spazticus (Zeitgeist Television), the prank show written by and starring disabled people, will return for a second series in the summer.