Russell Brand to present BBC Three documentary

Russell Brand on The Andrew Marr Show

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The comedian Russell Brand will present a film about addiction treatment around the world for BBC Three.

The one-hour documentary, titled Give It Up, follows his 2012 programme From Addiction to Recovery, and will show Brand interviewing political decision-makers. He has spent the last 18 months making the film and also travelled to Switzerland to find out more about the country's approach to treatment.

His documentary is one of seven factual and current affairs commissions from the youth-focused channel, which will see the Bafta-award-winning series Our War return with footage from the end of the UK's involvement in the Afghanistan conflict.

Channel controller Zai Bennett said the new programmes "demonstrate the range and quality that BBC Three viewers expect from our top-flight factual content like recent agenda-setting documentary Life and Death Row".

Other commissions include:

  • Eye of the Tyger - Outnumbered and Cuckoo actor Tyger Drew Honey will explore the impact of pornography, online dating and male body image for a new three-part series. Executive producers: Dominique Walker, Neil Calow and Ash Atalla; BBC commissioning executive: Sam Bickley (made by Roughcut production)
  • New Drugs Frontiers - Presenter Stacey Dooley returns to continue her investigation into the global drugs trade with visits to South Africa, India and Mexico for the three-part series. Series producer: Natalie Hill; executive producer: Mark Rubens; BBC commissioning editor: Darren Kemp (Watershed production)
  • Bangkok Airport - The six-part series has gained unprecedented access to the Thai gateway as it follows young British travellers visiting south-east Asia. The programme will also use contributors' own footage alongside fly-on-the-wall recordings. Series producer: Fiona Inskip; executive producer: Paula Trafford; BBC commissioning editor: Sam Bickley (Keo Films)
  • The Unit - Four-part series about one of the UK's biggest pupil referral units at the Bridge AP Academy in west London. Executive producer: Katie Buchanan; BBC commissioning executive: Clare Paterson (Keo Films)
  • Life through your Lens - The one-hour documentary uses clips from the best films submitted by young people to Fresh Online. Made in-house by the BBC - executive producer: Helen Foulkes; BBC commissioner: Elliot Reed

The Fresh website - set up by the channel with BBC Learning - has also launched a scheme offering £3,000 to support new documentary filmmakers, who can make a pitch at the Sheffield Documentary Festival this June. Film ideas on the topic of disability are invited before 14 April. More details can be found here.

Stacey Dooley in a plantation Stacey Dooley will investigate the global drugs trade

Recent plans for BBC Three to become online-only in autumn 2015 - with its programme budget cut from £85m to £25m - have been the subject of much controversy among viewers and talent.

Many celebrity supporters of the channel, which has been the test bed for comedy output, have expressed dismay at plans.

However the Gavin and Stacey actor James Corden said on Wednesday that he thought BBC Three would find a natural home on BBC iPlayer.

"It should always be at the forefront of what is fresh and exciting, and therefore it should be the first channel to exist online," he added.

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