Wrestling the growing beast – AIDC panel on the problem of scale

If you want a series commission, you need to offer something remarkable. Three producers talk through challenging shows and alarming risks.

For most of the history of factual, the subject was either too big, too small, too slow, too fast, too dark, too remote, too complicated or already finished. Shooting and cutting a scene was about making a single camera shoot look like multicam. Interviewers learnt to stop people from twitching and directors despaired over tense subjects walking like penguins. 

Then broadcasters discovered the extraordinary power of real life on camera, with ordinary people under actual stress. The entire production chain was transformed by chips and software while new technology blew most of the limits away. Audiences became sensation junkies. 

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David Tiley was the Editor of Screenhub from 2005 until he became Content Lead for Film in 2021 with a special interest in policy. He is a writer in screen media with a long career in educational programs, documentary, and government funding, with a side order in script editing. He values curiosity, humour and objectivity in support of Australian visions and the art of storytelling.