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  • Justin Scroggie

The Format Doctor leads masterclasses for Scotland's FormatLab


he Format Doctor made a return visit to Glasgow this week, to work with the Trainees currently taking part in the FormatLab programme.

FormatLab is an intensive training programme which includes a paid traineeship for successful applicants and aims to create the next wave of entertainment development talent for Scotland.

Masterclasses this week included: The DNA of International Formats, The Joy of Sets (why place matters in format development), and Ethics & Entertainment - a very hot topic right now in front of and behind the cameras!

More information

FormatLab focuses on the development of formats in factual entertainment including reality, shiny floor talent shows, game and quiz shows. The programme is designed for creative individuals from all walks of life who have a love of non-scripted television and the ambition to devise ideas that could go on to be the next Strictly Come Dancing, Who Wants to be a Millionaire or Masterchef.

The initiative anticipates the growth in entertainment production from Scotland following the Scottish Government and Glasgow City Council’s investment in a brand new 10,500 sq. ft. television production studio at Kelvin Hall, recently host to BBC One gameshow Bridge of Lies presented by Ross Kemp alongside the success of the existing studios at the BBC’s Pacific Quay in Glasgow, already home to Richard Osman’s House of Games, Impossible and In for a Penny.

Having completed the 2022 programme, trainee Rhian Campbelll, who received a placement at Tuesday’s Child, makers of The Hitlist, Lego Masters and Guessable said: “To say my experience has been life changing is not an understatement. FormatLab has given me the confidence and knowledge to work in Development. I am so proud to have been a member of the pilot scheme and to have my voice heard and experiences reflected in Unscripted Development based in Scotland.”

David Smith, Director of Screen, Screen Scotland said: “Empowering Scotland-based production companies to win new entertainment commissions is our aim. FormatLab exists to draw clever, talented people from non-TV backgrounds into television. Their original ideas will become new programmes that entertain audiences around the world and add more new jobs into our fast-growing sector.”

Kate Phillips, Controller, Entertainment, BBC also stated that, “After a successful first edition, we are delighted to support FormatLab again. BBC is looking forward to platforming creatives across all walks of life who are passionate about TV and want to develop big ideas.”

Phil Harris, Head of Entertainment, Channel 4, commented that: “Channel 4 is committed to nurturing creative talent across the UK and we are really proud to be able to support FormatLab again. This scheme will provide fantastic opportunities for entertainment development talent in Scotland – we look forward to working with this new cohort and see what great ideas get developed.”

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