Channel 4 announces new partnership with Northern Ireland Screen in bid to produce next local hit after Derry Girls success

Christopher Leebody

Television broadcaster Channel 4 has announced a new partnership with Northern Ireland Screen in a bid to grow the production sector here.

On the back of successes like Derry Girls, the media company said Northern Ireland has a “rich history” in film making and a “wealth” of creative talent.

They announced the creative collaboration would also include the development of the More4 Northern Ireland scheme, which is aimed at bringing the ideas of independent filmmakers to the channel.

Channel 4 also said they want to see more Northern Ireland based commissions on the channel and create more opportunities for NI talent to advance their careers in the television sector.

The company are also holding an open day in Belfast next week a range of talks, workshops and panels on how to submit the best television idea to the channel.

Last month it was revealed around 1.2 million viewers around the UK tuned in to the Derry Girls finale, a sign of just how successful the locally produced sitcom has been for Channel 4.

Northern Ireland Screen Chief Executive, Richard Williams said: “This marks another significant stage in the development of the Northern Ireland screen industry and underlines the importance of a joint approach to its future strategy.

“This partnership agreement is clear evidence of Channel 4 and Northern Ireland Screen’s commitment to invest financially and creatively as we continue to develop an internationally competitive screen industry here.

“This initiative offers local producers wonderful opportunities, but the real winners will be viewers all across the UK.”

Channel 4’s Managing Director Nations and Regions Sinead Rocks added: “Northern Ireland has a rich history in film making and a wealth of creative talent and, working with Northern Ireland Screen.

“I want Channel 4 to be the catalyst that harnesses the next generation of talent and supercharges the nation’s broadcast industry.”


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