Outgoing ITV executive chairman Michael Grade has slammed Scottish broadcaster STV’s decision to stop showing several key ITV drama’s such as The Bill, Lewis and Kingdom.
Michael Grade, the outgoing executive chairman of ITV, has criticised STV’s decision to opt out of certain ITV dramas. The Scottish broadcaster has stopped showing new episodes of shows such as The Bill, Kingdom and Lewis in what is reportedly a dispute over the amount of money ITV is asking STV for new episodes. STV has replaced the dumped dramas with regional programming or imports from the USA, such as South Park.
“It’s a mystery to me, as a viewer, what they’ve got that’s better than what they’re not showing. Are repeats of South Park, an American show, and Gregory’s Girl really better than Lewis or Kingdom? It’s mystifying.” – Michael Grade in Broadcast
The dispute between ITV and STV has been hotting up lately especially after STV decided not to air the revamped police-drama, The Bill.ITV recently moved the London based cop-drama to a 9pm slot with a much hyped revamp to bring viewers a grittier and realistic series. However, STV announced it would be dropping the series meaning Scottish viewers wouldn’t be able to watch it. ITV responded by scheduling a repeat of The Bill on ITV3, one of its digital channels, on Monday evenings although there has been no news – as yet – on how the repeats are faring.
Another victim of STV’s policy could be Scottish drama Taggart which has yet to be re-commissioned by ITV. The series is the longest running detective drama in the world but with slipping ratings, budget cuts and the dispute between STV and ITV not going away anytime soon the future of the show doesn’t look good.