Russell T Davies attacks Tory 'liars' and government plan to privatise Channel 4
South Bank Sky Arts Awards
It’s fair to say all eyes have been on screenwriter Russell T Davies over the past few months.
He’s been teasing us about what he has in store when he returns to running Doctor Who from next year, and he’s been receiving countless well-deserved awards for his Aids drama, It’s A Sin.
And with awards, come acceptance speeches - and he didn’t hold back when the critically acclaimed show won the award for Best TV Drama at the South Bank Sky Arts Awards on Sunday.
Towards the end of his speech, Davies said: “I’d also like to say, while I’ve got this stage, that this [show] was made by Channel 4. Public service broadcaster, dedicated to making this sort of programme.
“We know that the government has said they are going to sell that off. I know the government is wounded at the moment - it’s like a wounded dog, and a wounded dog bites everyone, and the rabies will spread. It’s still in danger.
“They said they are selling Channel 4 and they’ve said they’re stopping the licence fee by 2027 and we have to realise: the things the Tories say they’ll do, they do - they’re very good at that.
“We’re full of doubt, they’re not. They will do this. This is wrong.”
A government source told The Independent: “Ministers have decided that, although C4 as a business is currently performing well, government ownership is holding it back in the face of a rapidly changing and competitive media landscape,
“A change of ownership will remove its straitjacket, giving C4 the freedom to innovate and grow so it can flourish and thrive long into the future and support the whole of the UK creative industries.”
However, there are reports that the planned privatisation, which would be introduced in a Media Bill, could fail to be implemented before a new prime minister is installed.
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