tv The Media Show BBC News May 28, 2022 4:30pm-5:01pm BST
some actresses i was thinking of, i was doing a list in the office, and i thought some of them are on the signatories, but the likes of annette butland,, actresses i can think of growing up, but i do not see as much of, but are still in the industry, is there a period, actors from your generation struggling to get work and then actors, when they are much older, suddenly find more interesting roles, i remember and read saying she could not get anything, she broke away to have children and found it really hard to get back into the industry, to be taken seriously and given rose again and suddenly she has a renaissance, but there is a waste of years and presumably some actresses say i cannot get back in and they give up. and we'd had a wonderful opportunity with derek
and we'd had a wonderful opportunity with derekjacobi and we'd had a wonderful opportunity with derekjacobi —— and we'd had a wonderful opportunity with derekjacobi —— anne and we'd had a wonderful opportunity with derekjacobi —— anne reid. and we'd had a wonderful opportunity with derekjacobi —— anne reid. if you can _ with derekjacobi —— anne reid. if you can make it to your 505 and 605, if you _ you can make it to your 505 and 605, if you can _ you can make it to your 505 and 605, if you can get — you can make it to your 505 and 605, if you can get to 70, you might be a lovely— if you can get to 70, you might be a lovely dowager and getting tho5e adorable old women role5 lovely dowager and getting tho5e adorable old women roles but very few women are there and they can't keep working, they've got to do 5omething el5e. keep working, they've got to do something else.— something else. what is the challenge — something else. what is the challenge you _ something else. what is the challenge you are _ something else. what is the challenge you are putting i something else. what is the l challenge you are putting out something else. what is the - challenge you are putting out or casting directors and writers to tv producers, briefly if you both could. , . ~ producers, briefly if you both could. . ~ �* . producers, briefly if you both could. , ~ �*, . could. just rethink, it's a waste, it's a massive _ could. just rethink, it's a waste, it's a massive waste. _ could. just rethink, it's a waste, it's a massive waste. there - could. just rethink, it's a waste, it's a massive waste. there a . could. just rethink, it's a waste, i it's a massive waste. there a huge it'5 a massive wa5te. there a huge pool of— it'5 a massive wa5te. there a huge pool of amazing human creativity, intelligence, experience, wi5dom, courage. _ intelligence, experience, wi5dom, courage, creative bravery, you are wasting _ courage, creative bravery, you are wasting it. — courage, creative bravery, you are wa5ting it, that'5 not being used to create _ wa5ting it, that'5 not being used to create incredible 5torie5. ju5t create incredible 5torie5. just don't — create incredible 5torie5. just don't 5hoot yourself in create incredible stories. just don't shoot yourself in the foot by excluding — don't shoot yourself in the foot by excluding men over the age of 40 'u5t excluding men over the age of 40 just because they're skin isn't perfectly—
just because they're skin isn't perfectly taut. it's all fashion to be stuck— perfectly taut. it's all fashion to be stuck in these prejudices. i think the problem is the stigmatising that arises and that influence of television producers and film throughout the industry, even news, we have to remember that the impact that that has and the shock waves that come out from that and also, i made this point this morning on the today programme, juliet stevenson isjodie, plus time ——jodie comer juliet stevenson isjodie, plus time —— jodie comer plus time, juliet stevenson isjodie, plus time ——jodie comer plus time, and juliet stevenson isjodie, plus time —— jodie comer plus time, and this generation are incredibly talented actresses but the idea they have a finite usefulness... actresses but the idea they have a finite usefulness. . ._ actresses but the idea they have a finite usefulness. . .— finite usefulness... sorry, we've not to finite usefulness... sorry, we've got to go _ finite usefulness... sorry, we've got to go to _ finite usefulness... sorry, we've got to go to our _ finite usefulness... sorry, we've got to go to our next _ finite usefulness... sorry, we've i got to go to our next programme. thank you both for your time. now it is time for the media show.
hello and welcome to the media show. we are going to talk about partygate in this week's edition because sue gray's report or investigation into what happened in downing street during various lockdowns is now out. the prime minister has been responding, the media, of course, is covering it. and we are going to be exploring the role the media has played in this story from its beginning in early december, all the way through to this week of the report coming out. but before we get to that, we are also going to speak to anneka rice because the very famous format challenge, anneka is coming back, its been off our screen for 30 years but that period of time is now over. and anneka rice is with us. hi, anneka. great to see you. and it's very exciting for us because i understand the media show has a small part in the comeback.
it does because, i love the media show and i was listening to amol rajan and talking to ben frow on channel 5, it was a whole half—hour dedicated to him. i sat there thinking, "this is a man who "runs on instinct and spontaneity." and i hadn't come across that sort of spark for quite a long time. i recognised it because when i first took challenge 30 years ago to the bbc michael grade had that spark, because ijust went with a whole new format and he just went, "i trust you, go and make it." and you know, that is rare. and so i recognised something. so someone put ben and i together and the rest is history. so thank you. well, i'll pass the thanks on to amol. i can't take the thanks on behalf of myself. i got lots of questions about the return of challenge anneka. we will get to that a little later in this edition of the media show. great to have you on it. but we are going to start with partygate because the sue gray report is out, borisjohnson held the press conference, he also made a statement in the house of commons earlier and responded to questions from mps
from both sides of the floor. let's explore where the media fits into this story. we have stephen glover, a columnist at the daily mail, david yellen, former editor of the sun, who now runs the communications firm kitchen table partners. and ayesha hazarika, the broadcaster and journalist and a former adviser to some senior labour party politicians. stephen, i wonder if i could start with you. how do you assess the evolution of this story? well, i think it is a triumph for old—fashioned journalism. i'd also like to talk about beergate. that's the story involving keir starmerand his alleged antics in durham. on the one hand, we've got the daily mirror, which basically as you say, broke the party gate story. and on the other hand we've got the daily mail which pursued the beergate story for weeks without anybody really taking much notice. and it seems to me a good example of how the partisan press can work
very well in a democratic way. lots of people say, well, the press is too partisan and too extreme, we need more evenhanded, more fair—minded newspapers. but actually, it was only because the daily mirror so hated boris johnson that it went after the story with such energy. and it was only because the mail had similar feelings about keir starmer that it slogged away at that story for weeks or even longer before the rest of the media took it up. so, i think it'5 a good example of how newspapers, by being partisan, as long as they have some sort of balance, one paper here, another paper balancing it, it can actually serve the democratic process surprisingly well. ayesha, do you agree with that? that the partisan nature of some parts of the press is actually a crucial engine to this kind ofjournalism? i think i'd probably take a different view.
i think good journalism is not about being partisan. good journalism is, as stephen referred, that old—fashioned type ofjournalism which is taking the time, building up good contacts, putting the work in, checking out that everything corroborates and of course we saw pippa crerar do a fantastic job on this. but also barnard castle which she worked on with the guardian. i mean, itn news is not seen as a partisan organisation. paul brand has done a fantasticjob. i think what it points to is the fact that i think number 10 have been a bit shocked. because i think there are sections of the press, particularly on the right, who have been very supplicant to number 10. i think they have been quite shocked at the tenacity with which a lot of these papers and broadcasters have stuck with this story. i'm afraid i absolutely push back against some false equivalence,
120 fines at downing street versus one beer in durham, which the police did investigate. they said, nothing to see here, let's see what they say. i think this is the daily mail kind of collaborating with number 10 to push out this faults equivalence line. which i don't think washes with the public. stephen, i'm interested to ask you about that. do you feel the mail is collaborating with number 10 or simply putting across its own perspective? actually, it was the mail last year that broke all the stuff about wallpapergate in number 10, which was obviously embarrassing to boris johnson. that was the stuff about expensive wallpaper and who paid for it. no, i think the daily mail is perfectlyjustified in going after keir starmer. and clearly there's been some deceit there. angela rayner said she wasn't present and turned out to be.
i think they'll make out what they want. if you're right, that there is no equivalence and people say, well, fine, it'5 much more serious what's happening in number 10. actually, i think quite a lot of people are interested about what happened. and the fact that durham police have reopened the case and keir starmer is obviously very exercised about it. people will decide how important it is. david yellen, let's bring you in. you once edited the sun. you're now running a communications firm. i wonder how you view, first of all the work the media is done on the story but also how it fits into the political persuasions of the different papers. look, i think there no doubt. whatsoever that a good chunk | of what we used to call fleet streetj has been enforcing, has been acting as enforcer for downing street. there is no question about it. the daily mail is, of course, i much more professionally run than downing street. and it'5 extremely i good at what it does.
the fact is that nine out of 14 splashes in the two weeks up to the beginning of this - were on keir starmer. nine out of 14? you know, that is absolutely... it was a brilliantly put together campaign and they got what they wanted. - by the way, i think wallpapergate was probably under— the previous editor. sort of the same newspaper, isn't it? no, it'5 a very different newspaper. but, yeah, i mean, it'5 the same title. | just on monday, we had the daily mail's first paragraph was, - "sue gray is playing. politics over partygate, borisjohnson's allies claimed last night." i she wasn't. and, stephen, we should say you are not here as a representative of the daily mail, you're here as a columnist of the daily mail. but i wonder if you at any point have felt uncomfortable with the point of emphasis, how much emphasis has
gone on keir starmer in durham versus, say, not putting the photo that itv news obtained of borisjohnson having a drink. nost papers put that on the front page earlier this week and the daily mail didn't. yeah. as i say, looking back over the last year, i think the daily mail has given boris a pretty hard time in lots of cases. i'm just in the middle of writing a column giving him a pretty hard time. at the very beginning, to answer your question specifically, at the beginning of keir starmer when the mail started, i thought well, you know, this isn't going anywhere. and it went on and on and on. and in the end, they stood it up. they made a story and the proof of that is that it was then reported by the bbc and by other media. and if that is some thoughts on how the mail has approached this story, david, you've already alluded to how the government has approached it.
i wonder how you assess the governments media strategies and sis began in early december. i think what's really interesting about how the government has handled it is they've mishandled it right from the beginning. and i'm thinking today, why did they do that? because, of course, we wouldn't be here today with all this collateral damage being done to borisjohnson's reputation, the reputation of number 10 as an institution, the cockpit of government as an institution, the cockpit of government and british politics, the damage done to the broader conservative party. if right at the outset borisjohnson in number 10 had said, "you know what? we did, fess up, we did have a bit of a gathering, really sorry, i hold my hands up, we shouldn't have done it, we've had a word with everybody, we are deeply, deeply sorry." ironically, and i never thought these are words which i would utter, gavin williamson sort of played it right because he was in that position as well. he had been caught having a bit of a gathering. he said sorry, the world moved on.
but i'm just wondering now, perhaps number 10 at that point did know that it wasn't a one—off party. now when we see the scale of it. so what they have sought to do is to mislead then double down. i think this is the problem and then they've gone on the attack to keir starmer. let's clear up a couple of things, borisjohnson said he never knowingly misled the house of commons or indeed anyone else. he said today that he didn't appreciate the scale of what's happened inside downing street, he said today that he has been surprised by some of things that he's learned. i appreciate you don't agree with that but it's important we point that out. david, do you agree with ayesha that the government should have said, yeah, we made a mistake earler on? i'm not entirely convinced that would've kept the daily mirror and others off its case. well, let me turn that around, . the question is, why did the press office feel that he was untouchable? many of these parties -
written with these people. one was celebrating the departure of its leader to go off— and be deputy editor- of my old paper, the sun. ask yourself, why would you feel untouchable in that situation? i because you've got the prime minister| as your boss allowing you to do _ whatever you want and your boss has just gone off to be editor of one - of the papers that is not going to write about... i the coming together of the political and media class has created - an untouchable group of people. not steve's colleagues at the mail, i'm not... | i'm talking about those people, | it wasn't like that in tony blair's time, alastair campbell was close to the sun, . when i was editing, but not like this. i it's got so close frankly that it'5 dangerous i and anti—democratic, ithinic _
and, steven, you've got some writing to do. but i would be interested, i'm sure people that are listening would be interested in the process of producing a column for the daily mail, do you simply write it, send it off and go here you go? or is there a discussion with the editor or one of the editors below him about the angle that you're taking on the story? normally, in the morning i propose a couple of ideas to a features editor and then she speaks with the editor and the choices made between my two ideas and maybe three on some occasions. and then i might talk to the editor if i feel that he's got something to say or i might learn something of what he says or i might not. i've spoken to him this afternoon about a column i'm writing about borisjohnson and i take a much more critical view of borisjohnson than he does. he's perfectly happy about that. when do we get to see it? tomorrow morning. all right, we will watch out for it.
we'll let you go, we really appreciate you joining us. i know it's been a busy day in all newsrooms around the country. david, let me explore this a bit more because you are saying that the relationship between certain newspapers and number 10 is too close. but there might be some people think it, hold on a minute, papers like the sun, even when you are in charge of it made a point of getting close to people in power because in many ways it made sense. what is so different here? well, people did say that and they may have had . a point because at the time i i was a supporter and i thought it was great because i. thought they were good. there is a hypocrisy there, it'5 just straightforward. i newspapers support different parties. i i used to have dinner a lot - with paul dacre when i was editing the sun at least twice a year, just the two of us. _ and i can remember many times him saying to me, l "you are far too close to these people, you are far too - close to tony blair, _ you should'nt be at downing street."
these days i look at the mail| and i think, i've never known a paper at the moment that is closer to a prime minister— than the daily mail. i'm not sure quite why that is. it's clear there's a lot _ of independence, people like steve has a stature where he could say exactly what he likes. _ put it this way, if this - was a labour prime minister he'd have gone months ago. he or she would not survive having the tabloids - and the telegraphs and the times banging on. | it's only because they know they can rely on that support. _ the mail tomorrow will be more professional. at supporting borisjohnsonj because they're better at it. but it is also, you're saying if a labour prime minister were in this situation, i think it is worth pointing out that boris johnson is an unusual politician, i don't mean that in a judgmental way, it's simply true that he proves more resilient in moments of pressure that many other politicians and that's not necessarily whether he is conservative or labour, it's more particular to his character. ayesha, can i bring you in here?
this is a question we often explore on the show, the degree to which the media actually influences politics or simply mirrors it. we know from lots of borisjohnson supporters today that have said, look, mrjohnson has apologised, time to move on to focus on other challenges. who do you think decides if we all do move on, does the media decide that? i think the media does have a big role to play in shaping the anatomy of a story and the media in this case have been incredibly doggard with this story because there is a chance that this story could have ebbed away. butjournalists kept pushing it. the other thing which is interesting about this story is that clearly, it's a symbol of how dysfunctional downing street has become. because i worked there in the press office, i worked there under gordon brown, i worked under tony blair and there was a real... first of all, we were not
having level of partying, it wasn't like freshers' week what i was working at downing street. but secondly, we were a very tight team right from the cleaning staff to the people working in the kitchens to the civil service, the special advisers to to the prime minister, it was a really tight ship. the fact that all these leaks have been coming out in a sustained way tells you that number 10 is not a happy ship. we know that because of all the personnel changes and there has been like stormy clouds over downing street for quite some time. but what i think is true is that there is an element of partisanship but i think it's too lazy to say that. i think most of the broadcasters do not have a particular agenda. they are looking at this because it is a legitimate story to prove. —— probe.
david, help me out with some context, ayesha is saying the volume of leads coming out suggest a broader dysfunction a number ten. but the volume of leaks, has it really outstripped the kind of leaks we would've seen during any other political scandal? yes, i think it has. last night's panorama would be an example of that. there seems to be, and sue gray's report touches on this, a generation of very entitled people in and around downing street. they all the same kind of people, same school, same universities. and that'5 very dangerous cos they seem to think they have a right to be there and don't respect the fact that they're in this most extraordinary place. that is the prime minister's responsibility. he doesn't know anybody that didn't go to those schools or didn't go to that university. of course they are all like that.
i'm sure the prime minister would say he does know people who didn't go to those schools. you alluded to laura kuenssberg's panorama on bbc, she spoke to number 10 staffers who had attended these gatherings detailed in sue gray's report. i wonder both of you, ayesha and david, what are your assessments of how the bbc has fit into this story, some people reacted to laura's panorama and said these are significant screws but actually through the predicate story many of these groups have been coming via itv news or the mirror. should we read anything into that, ayesha? it's interesting looking at the way the bbc has covered this in the mood towards the bbc. i think a lot of animosity goes to back to barnard castle when the story broke about dominic cummings and laura and the bbc received quite a lot of criticism for reporting sources close
to dominic cummings x, y, z. there was a huge accusation of the bbc being a stenographer for dominic cummings and people at the heart of downing street. some of that is unfair, because if you're a lobbyjournalist, some of yourjob is to get the information to get it out there. you don't make an editorial decision, you are there and then i do think it was important for the bbc to do this panorama investigation. before i bring you in, first of all panorama is available on iplayer. we did invite laura kuenssberg to come on the show but she wasn't able to.
david, what are your thoughts of how the bbc has taken on the story? i think post—brexit when the bbc was accused of being unfair because it balances truth and untruth and i think there's a lot of truth or not. i think the bbc has been going through a transition of leadership in the last few months. i think that'5 part of it. i think they've been very steady as she goes type of thing. it's the only channel out there that'5 now completely unbiased, you flick between them and you go back to the bbc and it looks slightly less exciting because it'5 unbiased. i think laura's show last night was excellent, actually, interesting that when people have got stories to tell they will go to the bbc because they'll also be protected and they will be fair. ayesha, david, thank you very much for sharing your thoughts. you'll both stay with us but we're going to do a pretty sharp turn away from uk politics and downing street and talk about this. theme music
i know what i'm to be humming for the next two hours. channel 5 is returning challenge anneka to british tv screen 30 years after the original series first aired. she is with us and she's been telling us for some extent how it came about. i'm trusting you're going to be using the theme music again, you're not changing that. that is been the wonderful thing about working with ben. he just wants it analogue, doesn't want to go digital on this. when we first had a zoom chat about it i didn't even get my video screen up and he just went, don't worry, i remember what you look like. it was great because it wasn't about what i look like now or how many twitter followers i have,
he just wanted the show. we spoke for a long time about the legacy of it and he was very interested, it has been my life's work, all those projects are still going strong and most of them on very involved with. it was a breath of fresh air. you alluded to it at the beginning, when i heard him on the media show, i caught that in distinctiveness and spontaneity of him. he is someone who will just go with an idea. which we used to have in debate programmes in the �*80s and �*90s whereby you made a programme because you are trusted to make that programme by the broadcaster, michael granger said, ok, go off and make it. never had any contact with bbc. we'd just deliver the programme each week and that was it. now there is almost a committee stage of focus groups
and in the end it has been lovely. i am so excited about this reboot. when i was growing up i absolutely loved challenge anneka. you were an icon and i love you zipping in and out of all the helicopters with yourjumpsuit and all your headphones and things like that. i'm really excited about it. i'm very pleased, ayesha. to be honest, when we launched it this week i put up a very childish tweet which i thought we get about three people going, oh, that's interesting, but itjust took off in a way i wasn't prepared for. but it had your sentiment, exactly what people are feeling, there's such an absolute rush of expection and nostalgia. i think we owe it to that audience and the youngsters coming
through because now people your age will have kids and they are watching it and so life goes on. to keep it as it was. actually at the end of the day it's not about and getting someone to be my presenter, it's about those communities, the power of the collective, harnessing the power of television to make a difference, that's what it's about. i think i can guess the answer to this question but i'll ask it anyway. are you nervous? you don't sound nervous. no, i can't wait. it's not dusting something off, it's part of what i do every day. we saw the format around the world. i'm involved in all those sales, we did a version for america with erin brockovich, we built a peace garden post 9/11 for the families. it runs through me like a stick of rock. when is it on? to be announced. all right. i know ayesha is going be watching it. david, are you going to be tuning in? i will be watching with my
ten—year—old daughter and i know she'll love it because it will bring a smile to both our faces. great tv brings smiles to your face, strictly and so on, that'5 what television's about. cheering us up. it's been a pleasure speaking to all of you thanks for making time on the show. david yellin who now runs the communications firm kitchen table partnerships, anneka rice who is good to be back with challenge anneka on channel 5 very soon. earlier we heard from stephen glover, a columnist at the daily mail. thanks for watching this edition of the media show. we'll be back next week at the usual time. bye— bye. hello again. for many parts of the country, cloud did tend to build up through the day. still with some bright or sunny
spells, but skies like these were fairly typical, however across southern and western wales and south west england, it is a different story. here, we kept large amounts of sunshine pretty much all day. it really was a beautiful day there in parts of devon. now, overnight tonight, we will keep variable cloud feeding in on these northerly winds. thick enough to bring a few showers to the north and east of scotland, one or two into north—east england, otherwise it is dry, but with clear spells and cool air, it will be a chilly night, temperatures at sixes and sevens across the northern half of the uk. a colder start then to sunday morning, many of you will see some morning sunshine, however cloud will again bubble up, but this time to such an extent that we will see showers breaking out across parts of scotland, england and wales, northern ireland should stay fine and dry, closer to an area of high pressure. temperatures down on recent days, it is going to feel a little cooler in the breeze across the north, but warm enough in any may sunshine.
this is bbc news. the headlines at 5pm... people travelling abroad are facing disruption at airports, stations and on the roads as the half—term getaway begins. dramatic pictures from torquay marina, where a large fire has broken out on a superyacht. more conservative mps publicly declare they have no confidence in the prime minister after sue gray's report into lockdown parties in downing street. former us president, donald trump, dismisses calls for gun reform days after 19 children and two teachers were killed by a teenage gunman in texas. liverpool and real madrid fans descend on paris to support their teams in the final of european club football's most prestigious prize.