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Wednesday 24 Sep 2014

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The Adult Season makes welcome return to BBC Three

Model Alicia Douvall (right) and her daughter Georgia (left)

Following the success of last year's Adult Season, which brought BBC Three its highest-rating two weeks in its history among the target audience of 16 to 34 year olds, the season returns this summer with a host of new and returning programmes.

The season will explore the pressures on young people to grow up quickly, and what it means to be an adult.

Danny Cohen, Controller BBC Three, says: "The Adult Season brought BBC Three record-breaking audiences last summer and we're excited about returning to a territory that had such a big impact with young viewers."

Leading the season of eight documentaries will be a series of four films entitled My Mum And Me.

If your parent is physically unwell, schoolfriend sympathy and a shoulder to cry on are often at hand. But for a young person with a parent suffering from mental health problems, the stigma can be overwhelming and domestic upheaval can be an unspoken secret.

In this intimate and deeply personal authored single documentary, Tulisa – My Mum And Me, Tulisa from chart-smashing N-Dubz – whose own mother suffered from a schizo-affective disorder – will break the taboo to find out what life is like for other young Britons with a mentally ill mum or dad. The series is produced by Rowen Deacon and executive produced by Hannah Wyatt for Mentorn Media.

Danielle Lineker will explore the subject of step-families. Danielle is a step-child herself and last year became a step-mum when she married Gary Lineker, who has four children. Gary also became a step-father to Danielle's seven-year-old daughter. Gary and his 18-year-old son George will also feature in the film.

In the programme, Danielle will meet with other young people and families to discuss their experience of becoming a step-child, step-sibling or step-parent. Katy Sheppard is the producer/director and Ninder Billing is the executive producer for BBC Vision.

Being a teenager is tough, but for Jazz it's even harder, because she has an undiagnosed form of dwarfism and is smaller than an average 7 year old. Small Teen Big World (working title) tells the story of the close relationship between Jazz and her mum Bev, who has the same condition.

Starting with home video footage of when Bev was pregnant, this documentary follows mother and daughter through moving house and attempting to track down Jazz's average-sized father, but everything, including plans to celebrate Jazz's 16th birthday, come to a halt when Bev ends up in hospital. The documentary is produced and directed by Kerry Brierley and executive produced by Cat Lewis for Nine Lives Media.

In the final film of the series, Mum, Modelling And Me (working title) gives a voice to a young girl, Georgia, whose unusual life is reaching a crossroads. Her mother is tabloid favourite Alicia Douvall. Should she pursue her mother's Faustian dreams of 21st-century tabloid celebrity or continue with her education?

This is a film about the extraordinary relationship between a daughter and her mother who has come to symbolise the values of our looks and fame-obsessed times. Produced and directed by Anna Keel and executive produced by Jes Wilkins for Firecracker.

Samantha Anstiss is the Commissioning Executive Producer for the BBC for the My Mum And Me series.

The Adult Season will also feature a number of single documentaries: The Blind Me, from the producers of last year's acclaimed The Autistic Me, follows young blind people as they struggle to achieve the independent grown-up lives that others take for granted. Produced and directed by Dave Faulkes and executive produced by Jes Wilkins for Firecracker. Samantha Anstiss is the Commissioning Executive Producer for the BBC.

Alice And Her Six Dads is a warm-hearted and emotional film, following 22-year-old Alice as she searches for her real dad.

During Alice's life there have been six different men that she's thought of as being her dad – some meant more to her than others. But there's one of these men Alice has no memory of – her biological dad. In this film Alice sets off on a journey to meet these different men from her childhood, and in the process work out what it really means to be a dad. And Alice has a big decision to make, she's recently got engaged, but which of her dads will walk her down the aisle?

Produced and directed by Adam Hopkins and executive produced by Lucy Willis for Raw TV and Samantha Anstiss is the Commissioning Executive Producer for the BBC.

Alongside these documentaries will be a range of new and returning series.

Following the success of last year's one-off documentary, Baby Beauty Queens returns as a six-part series diving into the world of the child beauty pageants where nine year olds get spray tans and diamante eyelashes are all the rage.

Each episode explores a different element of pageant life, from the growth in the UK pageant scene to the explosion in the ultra-glamorous freestyle dance competitions and the little girls – and boys – who are keen to shine... not to mention the parents egging them on.

The series shines a light on life for aspiring pageant queens and child models in an image-obsessed 21st-century Britain. The series is executive produced by Nicholas O'Dwyer for Landmark Films. The Commissioning Executive Producer for Baby Beauty Queens for the BBC is Maxine Watson.

After a successful first series, Young, Dumb And Living Off Mum returns to BBC Three. The new series follows eight inept and spoilt 17 to 23 year olds as they leave their privileged pampered lives behind and attempt to grow up and sever the apron strings. From making their own beds to budgeting, they will shoulder responsibility for the first time in their lives.

Young, Dumb And Living Off Mum is a 6 x 60-minute factual entertainment show from Monkey Kingdom. The series is executive produced for BBC by Karl Warner, and for Monkey Kingdom by Helen Hawken. The series producer is Rachel Bloomfield and Samantha Anstiss is the Commissioning Executive Producer for the BBC.

Also returning to the Adult Season is Underage And Pregnant, with eight half-hour episodes. The candid programmes will once again follow a mix of young mums, and some dads, with varied backgrounds as they come to terms with pregnancy, birth, and their new lives with a baby.

The teens tell their own stories in an honest portrayal of how their lives were transformed. The executive producer at Mentorn Media is Hannah Wyatt, and Maxine Watson is the Commissioning Executive Producer for the BBC.

To accompany the series BBC Learning will launch a bespoke mobile-phone campaign in six specially selected London secondary schools. The campaign kicks off in June and will use bespoke drama as well as clips from Underage And Pregnant series 2, to explore sex, relationships and teen pregnancy, and engage pupils in relevant debate about the subject.

Notes to Editors

The first series of Young, Dumb And Living Off Mum pulled in an average audience of 558,000 viewers with a 2.5% share, and 5% among 16 to 34 year olds. The series was also a hit on BBC iPlayer, being one of the 20 most requested programmes throughout the run.

BBC Three has a unique role to play in public service television. It is the only youth-focused channel with a regular commitment to news, current affairs and serious documentaries.

We are the only channel tackling politics for the young through our General Election coverage and over the next few months, the channel will show documentaries on the war in Afghanistan, child trafficking, autism, the use of rape as a weapon of war in the Congo, bullying and the life of Nelson Mandela. No other youth-focused British channel makes programmes like these on a consistent basis.

And with the channel growing 30% in the last two years we know that young people like the ways in which we approach these subjects, and find them thought-provoking and stimulating.

On average 29 million people watch the channel each month, and BBC Three now reaches more young people in its broadcast hours than any other digital channel.

TD

Information for viewers

More content about BBC Three's Adult Season will be published, as transmission approaches, at:
www.bbc.co.uk/bbcthree/pages/adultseason2010

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