Associate Professor Helen Wheatley, of the University of Warwick Film and Television department comments on the BBC losing the contract to broadcast British Bake-Off to Channel 4,
“Being forced to take on the £750 million cost of the over-75s license fees has had a real impact on their finances and their ability to invest in programming, and the corporation has had to make cuts in all parts of TV and radio production over the next five years. If they had paid Love Productions an outrageous figure for the show, there would no doubt have been a scandal in the BBC-bashing press about excess, waste, or the over-paying of talent.
"Negotiations have been under way for some time, which means that Channel Four will have paid a great deal to take the show off the BBC’s hands. What will now be interesting is to see the impact that moving the programme from the BBC will have on its form and style. Will it retain its status of cosy, must-see viewing with a sense of almost quaint, nostalgic Englishness, or will being shown in amongst Channel 4’s advertising slots transform it, for the better or the worse? Surely those companies that sell baking supplies must already be lining up for some of the most lucrative advertising slots in the TV calendar.”
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