Producing Classics on Outside Broadcast in the 1970s: The Little Minister (1975), As You Like It (1978) and
 Henry VIII (1979)

William Smart

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Cedric Messina, producer of Play of the Month (from 1967–77), the BBC Television Shakespeare (1978–80) and others, was responsible for the majority of BBC television adaptations of theatrical plays for over twenty years. This article examines three Messina Outside Broadcast (OB) productions, The Little Minister (1975), As You Like It (1978) and Henry VIII (1979), to explain the practice and significance of OB drama. Messina believed that recording in romantic real-life locations (castles, forests, stately homes) could inspire visual pleasure for viewers, an approach based upon the simultaneous, but perhaps contradictory, representation of the decorative/spectacular and the (‘newsreel’/‘documentary’) real.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-16
Number of pages16
JournalCritical Studies in Television
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2015

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