Press Office

Wednesday 24 Sep 2014

Programme Information

New this week

Spice Britain

Sunday 28 August
4.00-4.30pm BBC ONE

Comedienne Shappi Khorsandi marks Ramadan by looking at the extraordinary story of the part food from the Muslim world has played in changing the British culinary landscape and the nation's palate.

She looks into the story of Britain's first curry house; the popularity of Turkish coffee houses in the 18th century; the Bengali Muslim influence in the boom of the UK curry house; and the difference Middle Eastern food has made to the contents of our shopping trolleys.

The majority of curry houses in Britain are run by people from Bangladesh, so when people say "we're going out for an Indian", they really mean: "we're going out for a Bangladeshi".

Shappi also poses a further question: if "we are what we eat", as the famous saying goes, then who are we as a nation?


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The Field Of Blood Ep 1/2

New series
Bank Holiday Monday 29 August
10.15-11.15pm BBC ONE

Adapted from the popular Denise Mina novel and written and directed by David Kane (Rebus, Sea Of Souls), crime drama The Field Of Blood is set in Glasgow and centres on would-be journalist Paddy Meehan (played by Jayd Johnson), a young copygirl working in a newspaper office.

Paddy dreams of becoming an investigative journalist – believing that in miscarriages of justice, reporters are sometimes the only hope. Funny, smart and feisty, Paddy seizes an opportunity to kick-start her career and becomes embroiled in a dark murder case. For Paddy, it's the opportunity of a lifetime but it comes at great personal cost.

It's 1982 and Glasgow is shocked by the horrific murder of two-year-old Brian Wilcox. Paddy is fascinated by the story and waits, along with the rest of the city, for the inevitable arrest of a murderer. When Paddy's 10-year-old cousin is charged with the crime she faces a stark choice between the two defining elements in her life. On one side is her job at the paper and dreams of becoming a journalist; on the other is her tight-knit Catholic family who want her to stop all this career nonsense and settle down to a quiet life with her fiancé. Paddy puts family first and decides not to use her inside track on the story to secure her first scoop.

Unfortunately for Paddy, glamorous colleague Heather has no such scruples and the secret shame of the Meehan clan is splashed across the front pages. Shut out by her family, Paddy decides to look into the case to prove her cousin's innocence. Defying her boss, she sets about investigating the case but there are shocking consequences for someone close to her.

The cast includes Peter Capaldi, David Morrissey, Jonas Armstrong, Ford Kiernan, Derek Riddell, Bronagh Gallagher and Jayd Johnson.


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BBC TWO New this week

Hans Litten vs Adolf Hitler – To Stop A Tyrant

Saturday 27 August
8.00-9.00pm BBC TWO

Accompanying the BBC Two drama, The Man Who Crossed Hitler, this one-off documentary explores the extraordinary story of Hans Litten, the young Jewish lawyer who challenged Hitler – and paid with his life.

The film reveals the fascinating truth of Hans Litten's life and work, the circumstances which prompted him to take such an extraordinary risk with his own safety and reputation, and the fate that awaited him after his historic moment in the Berlin Courtroom.

It asks what drove a 27-year-old lawyer with his whole career ahead of him to challenge fascism so directly, pursuing the man at the top and forcing Hitler to account for the violence of his massive private army.

Germany at the time was a young democracy, riven by economic failure and political chaos. In November 1930 a group of Nazi paramilitaries, known as Storm 33, opened fire on a private gathering in Berlin. Litten believed he could deploy a criminal prosecution of these Nazi thugs to end the political rise of Adolf Hitler by exposing the ultimate source of Storm 33's violent actions.

1931 was a pivotal year in the story of Hitler's rise; the last moment it might all have been averted, as Litten came so close to achieving.

This moving and remarkable study of courage, politics and humanity combines original archive material and interviews with Litten's friends and family and survivors from the street-fighting political landscape of Thirties Berlin and historians and lawyers to illuminate Litten's tactics and choices.


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Jig – The Great Irish Dance Off

Thursday 1 September
9.00-10.30pm BBC TWO

Four thousand dancers, their families and teachers descend on Glasgow for one nail-biting, tension-filled week of competition; the boys in their sequined waistcoats and the girls clad in the latest dress designs, some costing more than £2,000. This is Jig – the story of the 2010 Irish Dancing World Championships.

Julia's socks are held up with sock glue. Her bouffant, ringletted wig is fixed onto her hair with dozens of pins. Her fake tan and her make-up have been applied thick and impervious. The judge rings the bell and Julia walks onstage. Now is the moment she's been waiting for. Julia is just 10 years old. She's American and has flown thousands of miles to Scotland to live her dream of taking part in the 40th Irish Dancing World Championships.

This feature-length documentary follows the young hopefuls as they prepare to do battle in the most important week of their lives. It also gives a unique insight into this fascinating world and asks what compels these children to practise obsessively 364 days of the year for just a few tense minutes on stage.


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BBC FOUR New this week

American – The Bill Hicks Story

Saturday 27 August
10.00-11.40pm BBC FOUR

This documentary examines the amazing, true-life story of the outlaw comic who wanted to save the world.

Seventeen years after his death, Bill Hicks is now more popular than ever. Much more than a comedian, the legendary Texan comic was, and still is, an inspiration to millions.

Described in many ways – philosopher, social satirist, even preacher – his timeless comedy tackled the contradictions of American life head on. What set Hicks apart was that, although gifted at making audiences laugh, his deeper goal was to make them think.

This film combines revealing new interviews from the people who knew Hicks best, his family and closest friends, who recount the twists and turns of his life with a freshness that hasn't faded in 15 years.

Believing in living life to its limits, Hicks's off-stage exploits were often as radical as his comedy, as his drive for creativity took him to the very edges of substance abuse and social acceptability. Captivating photographic animation recreates scenes from his rollercoaster life, from early success as a precocious teenager, through the dark years of alcohol and drug addiction, to his spectacular recovery and international fame, before his life was tragically cut short by cancer at the age of 32.

Three years in the making, American – The Bill Hicks Story combines many unseen clips, and is an intimate and emotional portrait that will be both a revelation for fans and the perfect introduction for newcomers.


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