BBC FOUR - Autumn highlights 2004
BBC FOUR sheds new
light this autumn
Seeing is believing on BBC FOUR as the channel presents
the first ever television history of atheism - just one of the thought-provoking
and engaging documentaries at the heart of BBC FOUR's
Broadcaster and author Jonathan Miller, a self-proclaimed
non-believer, takes a personal - and provocative - journey to explore
what atheism means and questions why it is such an uncharted area of
study in Jonathan Miller's Brief History
Distinguished thinkers including Arthur Miller,
scientist Richard Dawkins and philosopher Daniel Dennett
join Jonathan Miller to uncover the history of atheism and question
the labels of disbelief.
Janice Hadlow, BBC FOUR Controller, says: "This
is BBC FOUR's third autumn and my first. I've
come to a channel that is in great shape and this coming season
"An autumn of challenging, enquiring and entertaining
programmes rich in range and texture shows BBC FOUR at its very best
a testament to Roly Keating's development of the channel.
"Since its launch in March 2002, BBC FOUR
has established a reputation as the home of enquiring and stimulating
programming - documentaries, drama, talk and analysis which all offer
in-depth analysis and exploration. This season is no exception."
In Light Fantastic
Simon Schaffer, professor of History and Philosophy of Science
at Cambridge University, explores the importance and impact of light
on all aspects of life and society.
This ambitious and engaging series offers the definitive
study of light how our understanding of the power of light affects
our very understanding of science, art, medicine, astronomy and even
The success or failure of a civilization and the global
dominance of one country over another are all determined by geological
In Journeys from the Centre
of the Earth geologist Iain Stewart travels from the
Egyptian pyramids to the thermal springs in Turkey to explore what the
rocks beneath us tell us about how civilizations develop.
BBC FOUR continues to offer viewers
insight and analysis on global issues.
Israel's Terror Bus
is a compelling human documentary which tells the story of what it is
like to ride or drive - Israel's notorious buses when suicide
bombers can strike at any time.
The buses have been a regular target for Palestinian
suicide bombers who have claimed the lives of hundreds of people
Israelis and Arabs and injured many more.
And as the United States prepares for the presidential
elections later this year, BBC FOUR brings viewers programmes with a
Ben Anderson explores the effect American foreign
policy has had on many countries from Panama to Vietnam, Storyville
examines 50 years of America's defence industry, and irreverent American
comic Rich Hall lifts the lid on the election process in his
Other highlights include:
Measure For Measure. Following
on from the phenomenal success of Richard II last year, BBC FOUR returns
to The Globe Theatre to present Shakespeare's enduring comedy, Measure
The live performance is further enhanced by a special
interactive theatre programme for digital viewers. Directed by John
Dove, Mark Rylance plays Vincentio, Sophie Thompson is
Isabella, with Liam Brennan as Angelo.
Theatre Biz. Dame Judi Dench,
Gillian Anderson, Rupert Graves, Adrian Lester
and Prunella Scales are among the stars featured in this entertaining
look at the world of commercial theatre.
Tales from Europe. As the former
Eastern bloc states prepared to join the EU earlier this year, Kirsty
Wark visited all eight countries to examine how they have dealt
with the legacy of their Communist past and what expectations are of
life in a modern Europe.
Popular BBC FOUR series Storyville,
Dinner with Portillo, Time
Shift and Days That Shook the
World return this autumn.
International cinema, classic, jazz, folk and world music continue to
Notes to Editors
BBC FOUR viewing figures:
Average weekly reach for 2004 to date (weeks 1-34) is 8.1% or 2.5 million
people. This is an increase of 47% compared with same time period in
Share for weeks 1 to 34 (2004) is 0.45%, an increase of 45% on the same
period last year.
In 2004 so far, BBC FOUR has reached at least one in five digital viewers
each month on average 6.5 million people each month.
Since Autumn 2003, BBC FOUR has been out-performing all comparable specialist
multichannels in terms of weekly reach and is on a par with Discovery
in the lead in terms of share (comparator channels being Discovery,
UKTV History, UKTV Documentary, UKTV People, History Channel, UKTV Drama,
National Geographic, Discovery Science, Discovery Civilisations, Performance,
Classic FM TV and Film Four).