BBC Four Goes Slow

This surprising selection of programmes is the antithesis to the general direction much of television is going in. Slowing everything right down gives us the time to really observe things as they happen and this series of programmes celebrates the simple pleasures of life in the slow lane.Cassian Harrison, Channel Editor, BBC Four
Date: 02.03.2015     Last updated: 24.04.2015 at 14.25
BBC Four will be slowing right down this spring with a selection of programmes giving audiences the chance to sit back, unwind and watch some very unhurried television.

Inspired by the concept of slow TV, when an event is filmed in real time, BBC Four Goes Slow will include a series of three deliberately unrushed programmes celebrating traditional craftsmanship, an uninterrupted two-hour canal boat journey down a historic British waterway and a three-hour tour around the National Gallery devoid of voiceover or added sound effects.

Cassian Harrison, Channel Editor of BBC Four, says: “BBC Four goes Slow is another brilliant example of something only BBC Four would do. This surprising selection of programmes is the antithesis to the general direction much of television is going in. Slowing everything right down gives us the time to really observe things as they happen and this series of programmes celebrates the simple pleasures of life in the slow lane.”

Make (3x30 for BBC Four)
Make is a series of three half-hour films celebrating traditional craftsmanship. In a world of fast-paced, high-tech mass production, Make takes a quiet, unhurried look at the making of a series of simple objects. Beautifully filmed and edited at a leisurely pace with no voiceover, each film is an absorbing, often hypnotic portrait of time-honoured skills and techniques, observing in exquisite detail the slow and careful crafting of objects such as a classic steel knife and a wooden chair.

Produced and directed by Ian Denyer; Executive produced by Richard Bright for BBC In-house productions. Commissioned by Clare Sillery, Commissioning Editor for Documentaries.

The Canal (1x120 for BBC Four)
The Canal is utterly bold in its simple premise: an uninterrupted two-hour canal boat journey down one of Britain's historic waterways filmed in real time. Inspired by the concept of slow TV, when an event is filmed in real time, the film will be a rich and absorbing antidote to the frenetic pace of modern life. The audience will be able to take in the images and sounds of the British countryside, spotting wildlife and glimpsing life on the tow path, as if they were there. Guidebook facts about the canal and its history will be delivered by captions imbedded into the passing landscape.

Exec Produced by Emma Tutty for The Garden Productions and by Clare Paterson for the BBC.

National Gallery w/t (1x180 for BBC Four)
Documentary filmmaker Frederick Wiseman goes behind the scenes of the National Gallery in a journey to the heart of a museum inhabited by masterpieces of Western art from the Middle Ages to the 19th century. Filmed in his characteristic style, his three-hour epic has no voiceover, no score and no added sound effects. The nearest thing to music is the drone of the polishing machines at dawn. In a richly detailed, beautifully nuanced portrait of the gallery’s working life, we are guided gently from board meeting to retouching workshop, from gallery floor, to seminar room; from the difficult financial decisions facing the charity’s executives to visitors’ awed appreciation of its blockbuster exhibitions. Combining a vivid sense of how vast the gallery’s many activities are with an eye for droll observational detail, the film reveals how the gallery works and its relations with its staff, public, and paintings.

Directed by Frederick Wiseman

KM