ITV to boost drama funding

ITV1`{jcomments on}Following the success of Downton Abbey, Scott & Bailey and Marchlands ITV is set to boost funding for its drama output.

The broadcaster has had a good run of dramas lately with Marchlands, Vera and Scott & Bailey all winning over viewers and critics alike – filling the void left behind by veteran dramas such as The Bill and Heartbeat. ITV is set to boost its drama funding even further by nearly £30m which is the equivalent to six or seven new series’ a year – which 2013 Marchlandsonwards.

It’s a stark turn around in fortunes for ITV which only several years ago had a run of poorly received dramas such as Echo Beach, Britannia High, The Whistleblowers, Harley Street and The Palace. Some predicted that in a wake of a string of poorly rated dramas ITV would abandon the genre all together and concentrate on big entertainment formats instead. In the past year though ITV has seen a turnaround in its fortunes led by the likes of Whitechapel, Downton Abbey and more recently Scott & Bailey and Marchlands.

Media Guardian reports that while some of the new dramas will be post-watershed Laura Mackie, ITV’s head of drama, is also interested in developing more 8pm dramas and is keen to develop the departments range beyond its current reliance primarily on the detective genre.