Friday, 29 June 2007

Bombs in London

How would the cops from Life On Mars deal with what happened to London on 7th July?

Fucking brainwave here. Going to call the brilliant (if slightly barmy) Jane Featherstone at Kudos right away.

My genius idea is not about transporting modern police officers back to the corrupt times of the seventies. No, it's about bringing DC Gene Hunt and his gang forward in time, and get them to tackle the current wave of Al-Qaeda unrest right now, and right here in 2007, Sweeney-style.

I know Life On Mars is an A-List Corporation franchise, but so fucking what? This show is ripe for the Youth Channel. A perfect, clever and very modern way of telling the story of the current Muslim unrest in this country without having to resort to dull and complex Newsnight-style overbearing methods of reportage.

Boy, am I on one hell of a fucking roll today!

Wrong Trouser Day cock-up

Something very strange happened to me when I arrived at work today. The dour security guard who nods me in was wearing cricket pads. Reception were kitted out in matching ballerina outfits. I got upstairs to find my idiot PA Anthony in luminous green cycling shorts. The fuckwit had only forgotten to inform me that today was the 29th of June - Wrong Trouser Day - and a fantastic opportunity missed for me to wear my 3/4 length GAP khaki trousers and cement my reputation as being Down With Da Kids.


I had a very fucking important scheduling meeting in three minutes and was about to rock up looking like a humourless stiff who thought he was 'too important' to get involved in a charity event.

What to do????

With some quick witted invention I suddenly remembered that I had put on a pair of pro stretch Calvin Klein's which were long enough to protect my modesty. I quickly stripped down, chucked my trousers in Anthony's direction and sauntered into my meeting....

... to find Roly wearing a kilt, Entwistle in testicle-crushing black leather trousers and Fifi showing off her figure in arse tight jodhpurs (I caught her eyeing up my package and was strangely aroused for a brief guilty moment!).

I sat down, crossed my pasty white legs on the table and leaned back putting my hands behind my head. I hoped that this would exude all the confidence of a metrosexual creative leader comfortable with his own body...

...And not a complete and utter twat wearing his underpants to work.

Thursday, 28 June 2007

Bertie drops a bombshell

I was forced to interupt a v v important viewing first thing this morning after picking up this from Bertie.


I had Layla Smith on the phone virtually in tears last night, absolutely begging me to come in and save Tycoon. They had big crisis talks all day yesterday at Network Centre - Grade even had to get involved at one point.

The good news is that they have hired *MOI* to completely restructure the entire series, cutting it down to half-hours, plus re-shooting 'the pier', 'Peter in-car' and 'participants pieces to cam' scenes (almost the entire series, come to think of it!!). Unless you can match the frankly silly money Daniela Neumann and that Jones prick are having to fork out to get me on board for the next four weeks, I'm afraid your Parisian chav format thing - Slops (or whatever it's called) will just have to wait its turn like everybody else!

PS - very worried for Layla. Reckon she is well out of her depth. Who knows - she might be calling you for a job soon!

Love and air-kisses,
Fucking typical. This is not what I wanted to hear. It throws the spanner in the fucking works for Salopes right when I least needed it.

Called Hincksy immediately to say we needed to delay the start of pre-production INDEFINITELY. I'm not kicking off Salopes Anglaise until my main man is on board and totally focused, not fannying about fixing prime-time ITV fuck-ups. Hincksy stumbled a bit, and said that he'd already hired two SPs, five shooting APs and a runner who started on Monday. What should he do with them, he asked? "Jesus! Just fire them and bring them back in 3 months or whenever. Sorry Tim, but I don't understand what the fucking problem is?" I shot back, a bit enraged.

Honestly. Is my favourite [for now] squash partner starting to go a bit soft in his middle age??

Wednesday, 27 June 2007

Inside Bjorn Borg's pants

As many people know I've always wanted to get unfettered access to a supermarket, as a way into the new religion of shopping. So you can imagine my delight when I see the recent dearly-departed (!!) Todd Austin passed on a Bjorn Borg (the tennis legend) access film. Quick as a flash I called Bjorn's people up and arranged a meeting.

Let me explain.

Bjorn Borg now makes trendy underwear (with a strong gay following according to Anthony) and his PR people want us to follow the launch of his briefs in Selfridges this Christmas. Yes, Selfridges, mecca of drainpipe denim and home of my consumer-fixated wet dream. I couldn't give a shit about Borg but if I play this right I may be able to pressure Selfridges in giving us more access and we could spin out a series.

If we can make it the right side of camp I might even be able to play it against the pink hits on Living (Next Top Model ALWAYS kicks two streaks of piss out of us every Monday night, no matter what we schedule against it).

I need a quirky, camp director to pull it off, so have asked Richard Macer up in Manchester to take a look (he's twiddling his thumbs doing nowt - as are half the staff directors at the moment).

I may have some genuine 'property' to boast about in the next Controller Summit meeting. V Excited.

Tuesday, 26 June 2007

Hands off my bonus

It's all very well Thommo and Fifi throwing away their bonuses, but I bloody well hope they're not expecting me to be doing the same.

I work damn fucking hard at my job, and the least I expect is to have my handsome remuneration package be properly honoured. It's not my fault that Thommo screwed up on the licence fee, and besides, I *am* going to be hitting my 'performance objectives' this year by lifting the Youth Channel out from the seedy doldrums I inherited and turning it into the "spiky", "itchy" force it should have always been.

I am worth every single penny of what I get paid [still nothing compared to what Kevin, Luke and Julian pick up at C4], so stick that up the Corporation's 'remuneration committee' diversity quota backside.

I'm convinced Fifi is on

Had another restless night. Surely can't be the mattress this time? Perhaps it's my new Siberian Down Ophelia pillows I had specially shipped over last month? Shit, I can feel *another* trip to the doctor coming on....

Anyway, got up, poured myself a glass of semi-skimmed milk and fired up the laptop. Logged onto and started browsing the latest list of older sexy ladies to have added profiles of themselves (also noticed that 'HoustonHarley' had sent me another 'wink').

Suddenly my eyes were averted to a profile that looked unusually familiar. She called herself 'LadyDoll50' and included a black and white photograph of a pair of larger-than-normal (at least to me) breasts. Her profile read: "...after many, many years totally commited to my job, I'm searching for someone who could provide me with a tantalising and naughty distraction from the pressures and pains of modern life in the corporate media whirlwind".

I looked at the photo of the breasts again in a bit more detail.

Fuck....... me........

LadyDoll50 is Fifi!!!!!

Jesus, this is fucking nuts. Here I am, aged just 33, and I'm transfixed by a black and white photograph of my boss's breasts! How mad is the internet??!!

I decide to send a 'wink'.... just to test the waters. My profile is deliberately vague so there is no way she will suspect that this highly eligible young bachelor 'winking' at her could be one of her (star) new employees.

This could become V interesting!

PS - Surely I can't be the first Channel Controller to have ever developed a crush on their boss??

PPS - And I thought Fifi was happily married?! Will ask Anthony to make some discreet enquiries...

Monday, 25 June 2007

Amanda Ross has big bollocks

I am thrilled at how Amanda Ross from Cactus is taking the Fight to The Man. Bring it on girl!

After returning from my French jaunt with Hincksy in a very optimistic mood (buzzing, actually!), I caught up with the Richard and Judy Book Awards on Sky+ and noticed that not only had Amanda given herself her own end board on the final credits, but it was substantially bigger (48point Helvetica?) than all the lackies who had slaved away to put the show on the screen without a hitch.

I so *admire* Execs who have got the guts and determination to take the credit where credit is due.

There I am, slaving away for months and months working with directors and producers who probably hate my guts, and then without so much as a thanks, *they* steal all the glory when a show is transmitted - so it's about time a brave, fearless Exec like Amanda stepped up to the plate and took a bow.

Sent her a quick text: "Amanda, would love to work with you on the Youth Channel. Want to talk?"

It will pay-off in the long run if I can get into Amanda's pants now (metephorically speaking only I hasten to add!) so she'll think of me when Richard and Judy leave Channel 4 next year.

I would love to tempt Richard Madeley (not Judy) to My Channel... he'd be so perfect for a Crimewatch rip-off or consumer 'journalism' studio stunt show.

Imagine the press I would get.....!!

Friday, 22 June 2007

When the cat is away...

FROM: [Local time 11.50am]
Subject: Taxi

Anthony, nearly ready for lunch. Need taxi from the Chateau to the restaurant. 20 minutes time? Ta

FROM: [Local time 12.01pm]
Subject: RE: Taxi

Anthony, are you fucking there?

FROM: [Local time 12.10pm]
Subject: RE RE: Taxi


FROM: [Local time 12.11pm]
Subject: RE RE RE: Taxi


FROM: [Local time 12.13pm]
CC: Jessica @ HR Department
Subject: RE RE RE RE: Taxi

Dear Anthony,

It seems you are not at your desk. I have been trying to reach you for the last half an hour on important business. If you cannot keep to the designated office working hours then perhaps you need to be reminded by Jessica what your responsibilities as an Executive PA involve.

Thursday, 21 June 2007

Fat wanker in Wellies

Picked this up from Simon Arkwright III on my corporate Blackberry just after Hincksy and I had touched down in Toulouse:


Hey up!

I'm assuming I'll be seeing you for a mud fight this weekend then at Glastonbury!!!

We're all going down there - Bertie, Michaela, Higson, Andy Newman, Henrietta, Shapsy, Lansdown, etc, etc. And guess what - Nandos are setting up a stall in the media VIP area JUST FOR ME!!!

I had no idea so many telly types were into their festivals. Is it the 'green' thing I wonder? Talking of which I met an eccentric Irish eco-warrior comedienne yesterday who is heaven made for the Youth Channel! I shot a taster tape of her on my new nokia (how cool!!) which I'll whip out and show you at the weekend.

See you in your tent tomorrow!

Big Sime xx
PS - have you had time to show Fifi 10 Rounds With The Wife yet?

Fuck me. Is Arkwright speaking the truth?? Is the TV in-crowd *really* choosing to do their marathon arselicking at the Glastonbury Festival this year rather than saving it for Edinburgh?

I *casually* mentioned this to Hincksy, who himself 'casually' replied: "Come on! I did Glastonbury for real in my student days. Forget it - as far as fun festivals go for guys our age, MIPCOM will always rule."

Even with this reassurance, I couldn't help but feel worried that I had made the wrong move in rejecting Cooper's Glastonbury offer. If Arkwright and his ilk will be there, surely I should be, even if it's just to gloat about my vastly superior accomodation at Babington House.

Concerned, I sneaked to the airport loo and sent an urgent text to Anthony back in London: "Call Cooper immediately. And get BA on the fucking phone NOW! I may well need to be back sooner than Saturday. Check nearest airports to Glastonbury that do direct flights from Toulouse. TVC"

A lackie tries to humiliate me

There I was with Hincksy at the Air France Business Class check-in desk at Heathrow first thing this morning, looking super hip and sporting my brand new Antler Amario carry-on case when I received a call from someone called Eleanor in Corporation Insurance:

"Mr TVC - I'm afraid to say that you can't travel today. According to the Corporation records, you haven't passed Key Stage Two of Health and Safety (Locations)."

I couldn't quite believe what I was hearing: "I beg your fucking pardon! Is this some kind of wind-up??"

Incredibly, this minimum-wage office slave shot straight back: "A wind-up? Of course not. We take health and safety very, very seriously at the Corporation. Our records show that you have not passed even the minimum H&S requirements to permit insurance coverage for you to inspect a production location, so I'm afraid I cannot allow you to board the aircraft and travel."

I was stunned. What kind of mob was this? Obviously couldn't let Hincksy see my distress and concern, so I shouted back: "I really don't have the fucking time to talk to you about this right now. I AM ABOUT TO STEP ONTO A FUCKING PLANE!! I suggest you call my assistant Anthony right away and deal directly with him." With that, I hung up.

I shall be having some strong fucking words with Fifi about this when I get back. Who the hell authorised such a minnow to ring me and talk to me in that way?? Did she think she was talking to some fucking runner or something???!!!

Wednesday, 20 June 2007

Outing the Gayers?

The brainy people at Mentorn are trying to get me to sign up this guy from the States.

They've got him to agree to come over to Britain and "out" gay MPs here, and have pitched it to me as another one for that (dreadful) Mischief strand. They want to call it "Attack of the American Gay Terrorist" or something.

Mmmmm. Not sure about this one. I don't think it might be the smartest move on the block for me to kick up a fucking storm with the government right now. Plus, I've got to say that the guy looks a bit like a paedophile to me.

And besides - who exactly is left to "out"? It's not like the sleezy Tories with all that orange-stuffed-in-mouth-and-wearing-fishnet-stockings kinky shit from the 80s and 90s is it?

Now a far more noisy - and even 'spiky' - idea would be this. Imagine if we could give ten of the most hardcore homophobic blokes in Britain a pill like this, lock them up in a house for 3 months and film them transform from nasty bigots to pink posers who end up becoming "sexually irresistible to each other".... WOW! I would certainly fucking commission that!!

Have ordered Silent Stevie to get in touch with the Pentagon A-S-A-fucking-P to establish whether we could licence this drug, all in the good name of scientific journalism of course.

My invitation to Glastonbury

That popular Cooper chap emailed me *again* today [blimey, he's keen]: "Where did you get to at the party? I couldn't find you anywhere....Hope you had fun! Anyway, want me to fix you up with Glastonbury access for the weekend? We're all staying at Babington House and I know there are some Corporation pre-booked rooms still going spare."

I must say that in recent years, I've rather fancied taking in 'the Glastonbury experience' (I notice all the crusties have been sent on their way nowadays). *But* having had the horrors of horrors on Saturday at the invitation of Cooper, I'm not really sure if I have the bottle to hack another weekend like that.

Trouble is, I'm torn. Because I know I'd like to go to Glastonbury just so I could get the chance to impress the presenter Lauren Laverne. She is one hot sexy minx! (I love her on Roly's The Culture Show). And very bright too. Her working class northern roots are a huge turn on to me. Plus, imagine how my youth cred would shoot up if she was my girl! [I understand that she used to be a hugely cool radio presenter on an "indie" radio station]

I mention Lauren to Anthony and he tells me that she's actually a happily married lady. Plus, by the way he enthused about her, I realise that she's just too much of a camp man's wet dream for me - people might start gossiping about "which side I liked my bread buttered" and so on if I were to make a move on her.

Sigh. Suppose my jaunt to France for two days to check out the proposed location for Salopes will just have to suffice then.

Still, at least I get to spend it with 'The Hinckster'! As cool (and as intelligent) as Lauren, but not as sexy (only joking I'm sure Tim!)

We fly off tomorrow and I am *so* psyched.

Tuesday, 19 June 2007

My Cab ride from hell

Hitched a ride from Soho House back to White City in a black cab that quickly turned into the worst taxi ride of my (young) life.

I was so immersed in this month's copy of Literary Review that I only half registered that the driver was talking to me: " I recognise you - the telly bloke, right?"

Here we go! You know you've arrived in the world of celebrity when London cabbies recognise you. I was flattered at this public sign of my incredible meteoric rise up the corporate broadcasting food chain. It's nice to know that My Channel was reaching out to good, honest working class folk like this.

I smiled and nodded.

"How's the new job?" he asked.

Wow, this cabbie really knew his stuff. He must be a secret Guardian reader.

I nodded again and tried to get back to the latest review of the late Ryszard Kapuscinski's final work, Travels with Herodotus.

"My kids love you!"

This was strange. Even stranger still was when he said:

"I had your mate in here the other day"

This was getting kind of spooky.

"Yeah, whatshisname, you know the skinny one"

I half smiled and shrugged.

"Skinner! Frank Skinner... yes, that's him! The West Brom fan!!! So are you both going to do another Fantasy Football then?"

Fuck me! He thinks I'm David fucking Baddiel! I didn't have the heart to correct him and spent the next 20 minutes being regaled about some team called 'United' who apparently had signed a 'cracking left winger' called 'Porto' who allegedly could 'thread the ball through the eye of a needle'. I barely understood two words in ten.

Upon paying he thrust his business card at me and I had no choice but to dutifully scribble 'David x', and shuffle mournfully back into White City.

I desperately fucking need a goatee trim.

Being Britney's Mum

My development lackie Jo (who looks very striking in a figure-hugging wraparound dress and strappy heels today) is convinced we should do an access film with Lynne Spears (no wonder! She spent three months under my predecessor securing the access).


I really can't be bothered with this type of celebrity documentary any more. I think I did it to death at C4 5 years ago, and don't wish to repeat myself.

McDonald (sharp cookie this guy) was earwigging in on my chat with Jo and very shrewdly jumped in, suggesting: "Why don't we pastiche [nice word to throw in McDonald] the Celebrity Wife Swap format and find another Z-list celebrity parent for Lynne to swap roles with? Imagine if we persuaded Mrs Timberlake to take part?"

Jo looked pretty peeved that her proposition for a straight access film about Britney's mum had been subverted so cleverly by her colleague. I just sat back and enjoyed the spectacle. He's a shrewd operator. Reminds me of how I was when I first started in telly.

I think McDonald could go far (if only he would stop wearing that fucking absurd baseball cap all the time).

Monday, 18 June 2007

My rock n' roll party from hell

"Do you want me to blow that up your arse, or are you going to fucking sniff it Big Boy?!?"

Yikes. I was in an 11-bedroomed luxury Southfork-style mansion on the Bishops Avenue in Hampstead. A lady of intense and striking sexual beauty was semi-naked wearing just suspenders, bra and high-heeled boots, trying to seduce me into snorting a line of cocaine off an expensive Gucci compact mirror.

It was 1.30 in the morning. I was stone cold sober. I have never taken drugs before in my life and I didn't intend to start now. For the past 3 hours I had been stuck in a party from my worst nightmares, being offered i) illegal substances ii) no-strings sex and iii) 'some light whipping'.

I did seriously think of texting Michaela and pleading with her to come and rescue me!


And where was that bastard Mark Cooper when I needed him? He'd abandoned me as soon as we arrived. He spent the whole car ride confusing the fuck out of me with in-jokes and witty references to musical groups that just went straight over my head. Showed off by texting Chris Martin a couple of times. And then told me that "Sadie would be turning up later with some bisexual friends" and to just "enjoy the ride, mate".

[As a sidenote, I should mention that I have recently taken to playing the Coldplay song 'Yellow' before going into Controller meetings. It fires me up!]

Once inside the house, I felt like a (very nervous) extra from Eyes Wide Shut. I took quite a few deep breaths and reminded myself that I was only here to check out the Renegade Burlesque girls. It was GOING TO BE ALRIGHT... I was on a research trip not a networking night. I had *nothing* to prove to these glamourous people. They didn't need to know me, and I didn't need to know them. Right?

Wrong. This was a world I'd always fantasised about, but never dared get close to. Their outright 'danger' scared the fuck out of me. Illegal drugs were being taken in full view of everyone; girls were snogging each other (and a lot more) with no-one batting a eyelid. I felt completely petrified by the whole event. What if someone was to recognise me? Theakston's career never really recovered from his night of sex, drugs and rock n roll.

Think of the scandal of someone of *my* importance being caught up in all this debauchery....

What disturbed me most was why *everyone* seemed so obsessed with sex? What has happened to the kind of soirees I was fortunate enough to enjoy at Oxford where we had the odd glass of Sherry and then discussed Important Stuff like Proust etc??

Modern culture disturbs me greatly...

Saturday, 16 June 2007


At the weekend I sometimes like to do business on the squash court. There's nothing like doing a deal and then getting buck naked and showering with your business partner afterwards. It's something the Dutch call naakt vertrouwen, translated literally to mean 'nakedness builds trust'.

Plus, you feel fucking virile afterwards! Hurgh!

Hincksy had raced into a 8-1 lead but suffered a sudden re-occurence of that mysterious muscle cramp and I seized my chance to fight my way back into (another) 21-9 victory. Considering how much better he is (Under-21 York University champ 1988) I'm amazed at how he never seems to actually win anything.......

After towelling down, conversation turned to visiting the proposed location for Salopes Anglaises next week. Sounds like the perfect excuse to get out of the office. I could certainly use a 48-hour break from the pressures of being one of TV's young starlets, plus Hincksy and I could spend some quality time together.

Me and 'The Hinckster' go way back. I fondly remember the time we sat up late one night round at his flat, munching on Waitrose Nachos with sour cream dip, and discussing what the colour of the leotards should be for My celebrity sports reality show .... oh, happy days.

After the gruelling physical exertion of the morning I spent the rest of the day tuned to the Radio 1 download chart, trying desperately to pick up some 'cool' and 'down with it' band names I could casually throw them into conversation at tonight's VIP Burlesque event. Cooper has told me that the head A&R guy at EMI is hosting it so I've got to be prepared. Memorised the fact that 'Booty Luv' is at number 10.

Haven't decided what to wear yet..... help!!

Friday, 15 June 2007

Burlesque Babes for Friday nights?

An exec called Mark Cooper from the in-house Music department emailed me something that caught my attention this afternoon. It was about 'burlesque' and how the nightlife of London is *totally* swinging to this "sexy, cheeky and saucy revival" [his words, not mine].

Mmmm I can feel a stirring...

Must admit the idea of some v scantily-clad glamourous girls tottering about in 9-inch high heels wearing next to nothing but feather boas and performing routines *does* sound like something quite provocative for the Youth Channel.

BUT.... I asked him, what evidence does he have to suggest that people [other than myself, naturally] will want to watch it?

This Cooper chap emailed me straight back: "If you want proof, why don't I take you out to one of the top Burlesque clubs??" I gulped and felt a tiny drip of sweat develop on my brow. His email continued: "Actually, fuck that! My favourite Burlesque troupe Renegade Burlesque are performing at a friends private party tomorrow night. Wanna come?"

Jesus. That sounds like one fuck of a hot night!! think I'll take Cooper up on his offer (it's not as if I've got much else lined up for the weekend). Besides - who knows? - it might *actually* be fun. I haven't had a chance to 'let my hair down' in such a long time.

I casually mentioned burlesque nights to Anthony, and he shrugged his shoulders and said 'the scene' was 'high camp', very tame and nothing to worry about: "It's not like going down to Spearmint Rhino and paying for a lapdance or anything!"

Damn. That's a shame.

Sex up my iPod

I've told Anthony that one of his most important jobs next week is to update my iPod A-S-A-fucking-P, before my embarrassingly limited musical knowledge is horribly exposed in a Controller meeting. I really need him to "plug me in" to what is hot and cool and important in the music world [I run the Youth Channel, remember!]

I'll be the first to privately admit I know fuck all about music. I have to rely on the 'cool' people to fill me in, like Michaela who introduced me to the *hot* new group 'Franz Ferdinand'. (They have silly accents - I think they must be German??)

But oh how different my life could have been......

Many years ago as an up-and-coming TV exec I flirted with becoming involved in the 'music biz'. I had a friend from Oxford who knew about a 'groovy' up and coming American boy band and needless to say, I jumped at the opportunity!

One weekend I flew to New York to see the boys audition in front of some of Manhattan's top pop impresarios. I was totally smitten, they looked great (very sexy hair) AND I even liked one of their songs. Did I want to manage them? Fuck yeah!!

But then reality set in. Was it really my destiny to spend Saturday mornings getting up at 5am to watch them mime on CD:UK? Was I really prepared to sacrifice my future role as a hot TV executive in exchange for a few gold discs hanging up on my living room wall?

No. I'd worked too darn hard to give up my dream of becoming TV's Youngest Channel Controller™ - and how glad I am that I made the right decision!

Afterall, the British broadcasting landscape would be a *totally* different place without my many successful commissioning contributions over the years. Like The Games.

Fifi: Forget the indies please

Just awoke to find this waiting for me in my blackberry inbox:

TO: All Channel Controllers; All Senior Commissioning; All Scheduling; Alan Yentob
BCC: Mark Thompson

Dear all,

I know I've mentioned this to many of you personally over the past few weeks, but it is important to remember that we must not forget that we have a core team of extremely talented, creative and passionate programme makers in
The Vision Department. These are some of the finest producers, directors and executives that any creative organisation could ever boast of having all under one roof, and I want to remind you that we need to be making the best use of them!

I appreciate - especially for those of you that are perhaps a little new to the Corporation - that it may be very tempting to take some of your better ideas straight to independent suppliers but PLEASE don't ever forget the rich talent-base that exists in-house and is sitting right under your very noses!

Here's to a fantastic Summer - I'm as excited as you are about what we have coming up in the schedules.

Oh, and remember - my door is always open!


Is that supposed to be a fucking dig at me? Perhaps I should remind her that when I put out the call for Salopes Anglaises I actually rang Martin Davidson first! And what did he and his gormless team come up with? Nothing but 'ums and errs' and fucking doubts about the idea!

Meanwhile, just down the road in Shepherds Bush, Hincksy bounced back within hours with an exciting premise, a series director attached, three contributors lined up AND a clever "itchy" way of doing it.

I'm not in this job to win friends - or pay lip service to well-paid, lazy staffers who know that fucking up my precious programmes won't affect their civil servant-like pensions in the long run.

I far prefer working with needy, greedy and desperate independents. At least you know where you stand.

Thursday, 14 June 2007

Panic over! Phew!

Ed just called to say that Ros has arrived back at base safe and well.

Turns out that having met 'Brian' at the Tescos car-park at midnight last night, she was "gently pursuaded" to take a trip to Cornwall in the back of his battered transit van.

'Brian' drove her all over the county giving her an unflinching guided tour of how 'Padstein' had been over-run by "The Rich" and forced the poor girl to whip her brand-new Z1 camera out and film "the fuckin' evidence". Yikes. Heavy stuff!!

She managed to get on a train at Plymouth and make it back to London in one piece by lunchtime.

I said to Ed: "Whilst I'm glad that Ros is back home, safe and sound, I have to ask the obvious question. Do we have a film on our hands here?"

With that, Ed hung up.

Was it something I said??

Peter looks miserable. I blame Lenny fucking Henry

Had a very brief if slightly terse exchange (which is highly unusual) with Peter at the coffee kiosk this morning. He looks in need of a damn good rest. All bloodshot eyes and carrying the sad body language of a desperate man. Fuck. Is this how it is when you get control of the Corporation's flagship channel? The poor guy looks shattered - haunted even - and way too fucking stressed….

Once back at my desk, I checked the figures for One and realised why. Not only has he lost The Apprentice - his jewel in the schedule - but that Lenny Henry 'thing' (haven't seen it yet thank god) playing in prime peak has totally failed to capture the imagination of the viewing public. 2.6 million is not something I'd be very proud of at 9pm if I were in Pete's shoes. I wonder if the sharks are starting to circle? (Must ring The Dark Lord to find out).

Just to show him (and Fifi) *I DO FUCKING CARE* about my colleagues I quickly penned this:

TO: Peter Fincham
BCC: Fifi

If it's any consolation, I'm thoroughly enjoying Lenny's Britain and don't understand why the viewers are abandoning it in droves. Don't let the latest figures get you down - if it wins a BAFTA (which it probably will!) your courageous decision to play it so prominently in the schedule will be completely justified.


Maybe I should have added 'the door to my office is always open' but don’t know how chummy I can be with him yet. We are, after all, bitter rivals for the meagre budget handouts from up high.

Soon after I sent the email, a rumour went round that Pete totally flipped out and was seen hurling his commemorative Live 8 mug against a wall. A shard *just* missed his PA by inches, according to Anthony. Can't think what might have upset him so much?

Got me rethinking my 3-Year Plan. Do I fancy Peter's job here first, or should I assume that my destiny lies in seizing the mantle over at C4? Maybe I should give Simon Shaps a tinkle and get his thoughts on the matter?

Questions, questions, questions....

Worrying text from Ed Coulthard

At 6.49am Ed Coulthard texted me:

"Ros hasn't phoned back in yet. I have notified relevant police authorities. Search and rescue mounted. Last contact at 11.55pm. GPS signal picked up on M5 headed down to Cornwall. Will keep you informed of developments. Don't panic.Ed"!

How am I going to explain this one to the Health & Safety Executive?

Wednesday, 13 June 2007

A nutter calls me

Shit. Just had someone called 'Brian' ("Not my real name so don't even think about fucking tracing this call!") on the phone from The Cornish National Liberation Army (CNLA)

How the hell did he get my direct number? Why am I not ex-directory? Hasn't the Corporation learnt anything after those right-wing Christian nut-jobs hunted down Roly a couple of years back? (I sent the IT department a triple urgent email: "Are you trying to get me fucking lynched?!")

'Brian' said that he wanted exposure for his cause, and in return we could follow them as they hunted down Rick Stein and everyone else who had 'plotted and colluded' in the white middle class invasion of 'Padstein'. I called Ed Coulthard up at Blast! immediately to look into doing a spiky, stunted one-off for me. I told him straight: "I want this to be my Fathers for Justice so don't fuck it up". He is sending a development lackie to meet 'Brian' in the car park of Tesco, Harlesden at midnight tonight.

I will of course be safe at home, trying not to watch Anthea Turner be a perfect fucking housewife. I pray it doesn't rate so I won't be forced to commission a third series. Do I really want to be known as the person who is singlehandedly keeping Anthea's career afloat??!!

How to play Derren now?

Anthony is a bit too fucking dilligent sometimes. I've just got back from *another* particularly depressing lunch with Ben Gale (this time, banging on about his wife's new SLK merc) to be greeted by my gay PA telling me that he had finally managed to secure a discreet hour with Andrew O'Connor and his business partner Michael Vine to talk Derren Brown. Shit. I'd totally forgotten that I made a big thing about wanting to bring Derren to My Channel, but got warned off by Fifi in no uncertain terms. So what the fuck am I supposed to discuss with O'Connor and Vine TOMORROW NIGHT at Century Club for a fucking hour?!.

Maybe I'll just play it nice and cool, say to O'Connor, "Are you guys happy with what you're getting from Channel 4 right now? Because I know (as an outgoing exec there, and a Very Important Person remember) that Derren is totally undervalued by Kevin, and just doesn't appreciate what he brings to the Channel."

Just unsettle them a little; start to sow those important seeds of doubt so that I can come back in six months and pounce properly when Fifi et al are on side.

Fuck it. Maybe O'Connor will just do a few tricks for me with matches or something, and we'll enjoy it, and all shake hands firmly at the end without having to talk 'business' about Derren's future.

I wish there was someone I trusted who I could turn to about this.

The pressure is on...

Worrying email from the Scheduler this morning telling me that my hot new Chav/Peasant reality show Salopes Anglaises "won't play on the EPG" and had I considered that the title would "alienate all non-French speaking viewers". Christ. Do they not realise I am a digital channel and therefore able to do what the fuck I want with my titles (or should that be 'f**k').

I simply must sign off Salopes this week. PLUS get at least five more edgy ideas off the ground and into paid development.

I've been thinking hard about Salopes and if we can cast some real working class chavettes to play historical 'peasants' it could give the whole format some more 'grit'. Emailed my latest thoughts to Hincksy. He's suggesting a P/D I've never fucking heard of before. I really need someone with a strong track record in 'chav reality' or at the very least Wife Swap. I'm not going to accept any old fucking desperate jobbing director on this one!

Massive relief to see that Bertie has signed on as Series Editor. Hincksy had to go out to the fucking Dordogne at the weekend (alright for some!) and literally beg him on his hands and knees to commit a day a week for the next eight months (this is a man who "doesn't do multi-channel darling" so I suppose I should be celebrating a coup of sorts).

I've never felt such pressure riding on one commission ever before in my career. Even with old, trusted hands like Bertie and Hincksy on board, I know I'm going to need to be across this like the nastiest rash on the face of the earth.

Tuesday, 12 June 2007

My Wet Room

I've decided I need a wet room at home.

Ben Gale was talking about his newly installed wet room over our tedious lunch today. He had it finished at the weekend and thought I'd like to know "how refreshed" and "alive to the day" it makes him feel.

If there's one trait I can't stand in people it's bragging. Gale spent a good 10 minutes going into obscene detail about the "spanish imported ceramics"... and kept asking me (smugly) why I didn't have one. So after picking at my salad niçoise (without the anchovies) listening to him drone on, and on.... AND ON I made my excuses and headed back up to the 6th floor.

Within the hour Anthony had made some urgent enquiries, and arranged for the head designer from Edwins Bathrooms to visit me this evening for a free consultation.

(It will certainly beat watching another tedious installment of Britain's Got Talent - although that Amanda Holden is one hot fucking minx!)

Gale could really do with being a bit more fucking focused on actually finding some hits for My Channel, rather than boring everyone with how "the steam versus heat ratio" keeps his skin feeling so "invigorated".


Sex and Animals shoot goes tits up

Just had a call from an hysterical Amanda Murphy at Ricochet. They are currently filming a 12-part reality format for the Youth Channel involving pets, parents and sex therapists called My Pet Sexpest, and they've had a major fucking crisis mid-shoot.

The USP is this: more and more couples are choosing to have a pet instead of spawn children. Now some pets (especially dogs) are affected by human behaviours (like loud, nasty rows and the like). Ricochet managed to find some animal psychologist who's [new] claim to fame will be suggesting that the wellbeing of the household pet can be directly affected by the potentially dysfunctional sex lives of their owners. [You can see why my previous incumbent bit Ricochet's hand-off - ticks so many fucking popular boxes: sex, couples, pets, crank psychology]

The best fucking thing about the format is the innovative 'DogCam' when the pets are placed in a strategic position within the owner's bedroom so THEY CAN SEE EVERYTHING that the couple are getting up to, hanky panky-style. The pets are also wired up with sensors that lets the animal psychologist analyse how their stress levels are coping when watching their owners debase themselves (in a variety of adventurous positions).

It's fairly close to the edge and I shudder to imagine how this format may have been handled had it been left to some other channels (like Five for example).

The current shoot for episode 3 has, I am told by the tearful Amanda, gone very, very badly wrong. The pet parrot has become obsessed with repeating the words: "Push it in harder, bitch!" whenever the blue-rinse mother-in-law visits. It's now got to the point where the ashamed couple want to pull out of the project completely.

The director is getting icy-cold fucking feet about the whole gig, worrying out loud that she "never trusted the credentials of the psychologist in the first place", and blaming the Corporation's blind determination to sign the series off so hastily. Typical fucking prima donna directors. Pass the fucking buck when the shit hits the fan.

These types of problems really should have been ironed out before the shoot by Elaine Bedell, but her mind must have been on other things at the time (surely she's not messing around with Clarkson again?)

Amanda wants me to draft some kind of concessionary letter that the production team can show to the mother-in-law, outlining the very serious scientific value in exploring the relationship humans have with their pets, and how no-one should be ashamed or embarrassed about the results.

I ring the nervy, stressed director on location, email my incredibly serious and well-meaning Corporation-headed letter over to Ricochet... and voila, the filming is back on within the hour and everyone is back on board! Crisis fucking solved.

Easy really, isn't it?

Monday, 11 June 2007

Lauren Hennessey's beaver

My hands are still trembling as I write this. I have just got out of *the* most erotic pitching experience of my (young) life. Now, I'm no stranger to turning on the flirty charm when it suits me, but Lauren Hennessey has just gone beyond the call of duty!

We were reclining on one of my Philippe Starck black leather sofas having a delightful chat about her mega-indie buying up some no-name wonders in Brighton to expand their 'regional footprint' when I glimpsed the most haunting sight I (or anyone else for that matter) could EVER wish to see at 11.30 on a Monday morning.

Lauren (wearing a sharp A-line power skirt) uncrossed her legs V...E...R...Y ... S...L...O...W...L...Y in what can only be described as 'Doing a Sharon' giving me an uninterrupted tunnel-like view down her milky white thighs.

Oh! My! Fucking! God!

....She was not wearing - (how can I best put this?) - any lady undergarments. In fact, to Lauren's grooming credit, she was plucked, pruned and sculpted to within an inch of her life. (I had no idea Nicky Clarke now did this sort of styling)

In an instant all my Linda Fiorentino fantasies had come true! I must have stammered mid sentence because she smiled to herself and continued to outline a big new provocative studio entertainment idea (20-hours worth) called Scratch My Back and I'll Scratch Yours hosted by Jimmy Carr (Couples vs Couples with big money prizes on offer etc etc etc).

At the end of the meeting I stood up awkwardly trying to cover my trouser tent. On the way out she pecked me on the cheek and purred knowingly: "So I'll take it you're interested then? Or is that a Greg Dyke hiding in your pocket?"

I was mortified. Like a rabbit caught in the headlights I immediately agreed to develop the show and promised her £25k.

(Afterwards Anthony had to rush to the canteen to get me a bucket-load of some ice-cold bottled Evian).

The Dark Lord screams at me

Fuck. Just had The Dark Lord (AKA PR maestro James Herring) on the phone going thermonuclear in my ear. Saying "how dare I fucking even fucking think" about sacking him over the Guardian piece and that did I not realise "what an ungrateful little shit" I can be at times.

I may be forced to rethink this. Particularly now that Herring is threatening to hold me to my 18-month binding contract (signed in sheep’s blood with a copy filed away with the devil herself no doubt!) which essentially means that unless I can somehow cough up £230k to buy myself out of this legal stranglehold, I have no choice but to keep hold of him.

But boy, he better fucking buck up his ideas.

I may have to prolong this unholy marriage of PR convenience, but that doesn’t mean I can't lay down some ground rules – and fucking fast!

Sunday, 10 June 2007

I never make mistakes, but...

Mistake One - Opening my Blackberry emails on a Sunday. When will I ever learn?!

Mistake Two - Reading a 2 page missive sent by Richard Klein at 9pm on Friday. He's 'concerned' at my lack of appreciation for his department and says that my new Fact-Lite brief has forced him 'back to the drawing board'. Sounds like excuses, excuses, ex-fucking-scuses to me. Will haul him into my office for a 'heart-to-heart' and a 'clearing of the air' (followed by a swift kick in the proverbial bollocks!)

Mistake Three - Opening an email from Moonbeam Films (not again...) pitching me an idea called Kentucky Fried Children, a 'searing expose of child labour in the fast food industry'. Is there no way I can block emails from outside the M25?!

Mistake Four - Copied in on an angry email from Programme Finance re: Endemol's submitted budget for Salopes Anglaises £200k OVER my slot price. What is Hincksy trying to do? Torpedo the project before it's even started? He's even got a line in for 'Buying a 17th century French Farmhouse'. Doesn't he know my humble tariffs? Sent him a text: "H, please scale back your ambitions ASA-fucking-P or it will never get thru".

Mistake Five - Everyone else is outside enjoying the glorious sunshine whilst I'm stuck indoors drafting my first inter-departmental cross platform briefing document outlining my 'holistic' 1080 degree channel vision (Worried. Should I call it '360 degree x 3'?).

It's moments like these that I realise why I am being paid such a handsome renumeration package (incl Bupa, uncapped expense account, 30 days annual leave, company driver and 4 free tickets to Wimbledon)...

... because I'm a work-a-fucking-holic!

Saturday, 9 June 2007

My George Michael gig from hell

Just back. Still breathless. Wow! Or should that be...Wham!

Michael Foster (Chris Evans' rottweiler agent) rang this afternoon and invited me to Wembley to soak up the George Experience and 'talk about Chris'. What a great opportunity to get back into the limelight and stop moping at home. He has no idea that I'm actually a closet Wham! fan...

Foster is desperate to get Chris onto the Youth Channel and back in the Big Time. Little does he know that the only chance Chris has of ever getting on My Channel is if he invented a time machine to take him back to Britpop circa 1996. Or introduced me to Ginger Spice, whichever came first.

Obviously I can't tell Foster this; he has the bedside manner of an incontinent dog and the breath of a pirate. In fact he terrifies the fuck out of me!!

Before leaving I dug out my old Wham! limited edition sleeveless white t-shirt and sniffed it longingly... how I wish I could have worn it to the gig, but sadly, this was a networking event so it had to be a jacket, vest and ripped jeans for me.

Everything was going swimmingly well in the VIP lounge. Chris and I were sharing a few witty one liners. The champagne was flowing. But then disaster struck..... who should walk in the door but Mark fucking Thompson (my boss!) and his MILFy wife. He sauntered right up to Foster to chat (apparently they go way back). Ten minutes later still no acknowledgement. My own fucking boss didn't even give me a second glance! They were so deep in conversation I think I could see Foster's head completely buried up Thompson's arse.

This put a serious downer on the evening for me, which was only helped (barely) by the magical George and his marvellous magical music. Sigh.

What would I do without Club Tropicana to pick me up at times like these?

Fuck The Guardian

Nearly spat out my high fibre breakfast (and half pint of organic yak’s milk) when flicking through today’s Guardian.

Fuck. Ing. Hell

I am NOT the story. I am the man behind the scenes who creates the story. Who pulls the strings. Who makes the dream happen. I’m the man responsible for the next wave of itchy reality formats for the myspace generation.

I am NOT the fucking scarlet pimpernel of the industry. Why can’t I record my personal and professional thoughts without fear of a witch hunt!? What next? Chasing my Rabbi down the street for a quote?

It is absolutely imperative that my profile is under the radar. You haven’t seen ME on BBC Breakfast this week having to defend my bad taste editorial decisions (Hello Hamish).

With regret, I have no choice but to sack Herring. This is the third time his PR has let me down. First, that Broadcast rag piece, then the Celebrity Big Brother disaster – and now this!!!

I’m trying to crack on with my Massively Important role as a creative television visionary but instead I have to deal with personality assassinations by 'anonymous' (ie spineless) TV producers calling me arrogant. The same spineless producers who will smile in my face on Monday morning; WHO HAVE FINANCED THEIR KIDS THROUGH OXFORD ON MY FUCKING SUCCESS REMEMBER!

People should welcome my openness. I'm breaking NEW, EXCITING, BOLD ground with the first EVER blog communicating directly to the viewer. And this is the thanks I get from my jealous contemporaries?


Friday, 8 June 2007


Hot tip-off: Michaela said she saw Simon Arkwright III coming out of a meeting with Rubin, C4's floppy haired sex-obsessed wunderkind, in very high spirits - laughing and slapping each other on the back. Apparently Arkwright was carrying a pair of red boxing gloves (!)

Shit! Have I missed out on something here with that dire relationship format of his? Why is Rubin so keen?

Called Arkwright up immediately and left a voicemail:

"Si, I've been thinking about 10 Rounds With the Wife. I think there might be a place for it at 10pm, so why don't you send me a 1-pager and I'll discuss it with Fifi"

I have absolutely NO intention of commissioning it but at least I can delay it going to my rivals at Horseferry Rd. And it will certainly keep Rubin-the-fop on his twinkly little toes.

Thursday, 7 June 2007

Katie Hopkins gives me a hard-on

There's a secret tape doing the rounds here on the 6th floor of Katie Hopkins telling Sugar to stick his fucking poxy job where Amstrad doesn't shine. Apparently she was only doing the show to enhance her 'media exposure' (The Series Producer had to intervene and re-shoot the boardroom scene to protect the integrity of the show- and her from a public lynching).

Wow. You've got to admire her large (sexy) bollocks...

Lets face it - who would want to trek out to fucking Brentwood (where is that anyway? Near Essex??) and get paid a lowly £100K to be sirallun's arsewipe anyway??!

I wonder how many of the 5.17 million viewers Peter has been getting for The Apprentice have only really been watching because - like me - they got permanent viagra-like hard-ons whenever Katie Hopkins and her evil, bitchy ways made an appearance on screen?

Yes, she's an über-bitch. And oh yes, she is a nasty fucking cow. But boy, I am *so* secretly attracted to that! Call me *strange* but she looked so fucking hot sat next to that fat brummie cherub Chiles in the after-show schmooze last night on BBC2.

I doubt very much whether anyone in this dinosaur organisation has had the vision and foresight yet to consider giving her a show of her own. SO... I'm going to get my team working up half a dozen noisy and spiky ideas for her to front on My Channel.

Anyway, glad I turned down that horrendous Badger woman last year, who I see has now been reincarnated as some sort of 'business guru' (yeah right) in a cheap and nasty Sky One patronise-ment show.

But I ain't missing out on Mistress Minxy Hopkins - you're gonna be mine baby!!

Breakfast with the Laziest Cunt in TV

I was midway through my Greek Yoghurt with honey and hazelnuts (and half a pink grapefruit on the side) when Dave Gravy finally showed up - 20 fucking minutes late.

I had been at The Wolseley since half seven with "Seb" Scott and we were right in the middle of brainstorming an interesting modelling-meets-plastic-surgery-meets-weight loss-meets-feeling fucking ugly-with-a-shocking-twist reality format, when the stupid cunt interupted us.

He looked totally out of place in this setting: sweat dripped from his pasty face, and he had on what looked like cycling shorts. Oh God, they were cycling shorts! Flustering his apologies at "the cacking traffic" he then proceeded to hang his fucking cycling helmet on the back of the chair and snap his fingers to draw the attention of the waiter.

I wanted to crawl into a hole.

Gravy slumped in a chair and ordered Fried Duck Eggs with Ayrshire Bacon (was he trying to impress me or something?) "Right. Where were we lads?!"

Maybe it's my NLP training, but I didn't trust this guy one little bit. He seemed totally full of bullshit, and I was immediately concerned that Seb hadn't picked up on this. I rely on Exec Producers for their superlative judgement, so why was he so keen on some Mr Average that struck me as a typical Twat-on-the-fucking-Take?!

This worried me greatly.

Later, after Gravy went off to the loos to "wipe down" I said to Seb: "Dave's definitely interesting - what made you hire him?" Seb, with an almost masonic-like twinkle in his little camp eyes said: "Oh, Dave is class, isn't he?! So on the ball. So full of balls! I really like his take on the world. Got great, mad ideas. He came up with the format to Faking It you know."

After just 15 minutes in this Scouse cunt's company, I could tell that he's never had an original thought of his own in his entire career! So why was Sebastian so hopelessly taken in by him? [Besides the obvious, like wanting to shag his brains out - like everyone else, I've heard the rumours that he likes a bit of northern rough once in a while].

I texted Charlotte on the way back to White City to confirm what she had told me: He is indeed The Laziest Cunt in Television™.

Well, he's not going to pull the wool over my fucking eyes. Gravy had better watch the fuck out - I am on to him.

Wednesday, 6 June 2007

Lygo (finally) emails back....

This just came through. I opened it nervously, instantly reminded of the somewhat fragile mental state I was in when I emailed my old boss right in the middle of that fucking Ofcom Celebrity Big Brother storm.

SUBJECT:RE:Re What's all the fuss about?

Dear TVC,

I have my hands fucking busy dealing with Diana today so please forgive the brief response. No doubt you are aware that the shit has ‘royally’ hit the fan here. Prince Charles was on the blower for 20 minutes blathering on about my integrity. The Board are twitchy. Every right wing Christian nutjob is calling the switchboard to complain. Ofcom slapping us on the wrist for your handling of CBB is nothing compared to the stuff I’m having to deal with on this.

Look, shit happens. Andy and me (and Julian) have tremendous respect for what you did whilst you were at the Channel. But you’ve got to stand on your own two feet now.


What a patronising cock cheese! I definitely need an informal lunch meet with Kevin to properly lay down my legacy. He needs to be reminded of what a fucking great ship I left behind for the likes of Andy Mac and Angela to go and cock up. I instruct Anthony to ring Helen Pickett A-S-A-fucking-P.

Records need to be set straight here. And fucking fast.

Dead Diana on C4 = PR genius!

Top marks to my pal [and personal PR advisor] James Herring. Texted him this morning to congratulate him on getting some brilliant "noise" for Hamish The Boffin's Diana film due to air tonight. Whilst loitering with a skinny latte-on-ice in the 'Stage Door' area at TVC, I noticed that ALL FIVE screens (that simultaneously broadcast the Corporation's worldwide output) were showing The Boffin on BBC fucking Breakfast justifying the dead Diana photo "controversy". Incredible.

Herring is a fucking genius. I actually saw the final cut of this film before I departed Horseferry Road and it's nothing much. I heard a whisper that Kevin was v v worried that it would disappear with a whimper UNLESS the media were able to whip themselves up into a stupendous frenzy over SOMETHING in it. And that's where Herring stepped in.

Even though the Corporation and some ten-bob-note snooze-digital channels have used the same pics of dead Diana in other programmes before, Herring made sure that a few in-the-know media hacks got anonymous DVDs A MONTH AGO - a 2-minute clip from the film that features the oh-so-controversial images. Herring - shrewd fucking operator that he is - also advised Kevin to broadcast the film earlier than planned knowing that with Blair on his extended farewell tour, there would be fuck all else for hacks to report on.

Herring certainly knows how to whip up a fucking storm. I wonder if Luke "Grandad" Johnson knows how much they pay him?! Anyway, glad I've got him on my fucking team, even if he does cost me a small fortune!

Sigh, I must admit that it is at times like these that I miss the thrill and the chase and the pure excitement of life in the commercial television sector.

Lucky fucking Julian.

Tuesday, 5 June 2007

16 Things I Did Today

As you can see, I have a very hectic schedule as TV's Youngest (and most talented) Channel Controller. This is what I achieved today in full:

1) Answered several shouty letters from John Bird, Shelter and Bono calling Filthy Rich & Homeless "irresponsible". What do they know?

2) Ducked out of Programme Review. Can't stomach a second more of praise for The Apprentice. Thankfully Anthony invented a 'crisis in the edit' I urgently needed to attend.

3) Spent 5 minutes reading my chum Jay Rayner's review of Suka (I won't be going there then)

4) Spent 10 minutes checking out a new dating site I'm thinking of joining

5) Spent 20 minutes perving over Paris Hilton

6) Avoided Chris at Broadcast wanting my thoughts on the dead Diana pics (I'm not getting involved in this one! Let Hamish "the Boffin" dig himself out of another hole!)

7) Devised two devastatingly pithy new ways of saying 'no' to crap ideas.

8) Sent shitty email to Klein, Gale et al asking "if they were bothering to develop any new ideas for me" and if so, "could they fucking get a move on"

9) Lunched with the lovely Tamsin at The Ledbury

10) Fretted about the manliness of my straggly beard and it's overall impact on people I meet for the first time. (Do they fancy me I wonder?)

11) Spent afternoon drafting a speech I'm giving at the Young, Gifted and Yiddish Conference in Washington DC this August.

12) Ignored an email from some finance bod claiming 'irregularities' in my May expenses. Surely some mistake?

13) Ignored email from Moonbeam Films (WHO-THE-FUCK?!) asking if I'd like to acquire their series World's Greatest Shops. Fucking 'regional' people...

14) Ignored Brian Hill

15) Gave Ariel rag a quick quote about the threatened closure of a shop at White City (like I care?) and tried to sound casual-yet-clever-yet-cool-yet-not-a-complete-and-utter-smarmy-cunt.

16) Sucked up to Fifi a bit

Phew! And who said you can relax when you get to the top?

Brian Hill's Singing Sex Offenders

Christ, I thought I had escaped the 'Singing Documentary' genre, but that bastard Brian Hill (previously responsible for docu-musicals like this) has somehow managed to stalk me in my new job. Got this email today:

SUBJECT:Inside the Mind of a Sex Offender

First off, massive congratulations on the new job. I hope you are settling in well.

I've got a number of ideas that I'd really like to run by you - some of which I know that Julian and Ben Gale were quite keen on.

In fact Julian gave me some development money for Inside The Mind of a Sex Offender - Simon Armitage has now written a stunning script for this, and we have worked very hard for several months to get great access to HM Prescoed.

Can Simon and I come in and get some kind of update from you about how you see this progressing?


Why-oh-fucking-why does he assume that just because the previous incumbent gave him the time of day I'm going to suddenly greenlight his bonkers new docu-musical?

I get these type of emails one hundred-fold day in, day out. Desperate sales pitches from desperate execs trying to peddle their latest crop of shit. I'll bet my life that he's already had this idea rejected at least twice by Channel 4, and here he is (again) hoping I'll let his poxy idea slip quietly through the back door just because "Julian gave me some development money".

When will someone have the fucking guts to pitch me something Ambitious, Noisy AND Interesting for a change??!!

Is it any wonder that I have to depend on people I know and trust (like Hincksy) to deliver me killer formats that are guaranteed to rate?

Monday, 4 June 2007

My Big Fat Gay 3-hour Brainstorm

Simon Arkwright III brought his team in to see me today - and halfway through the meeting something quite extraordinary happened.

A Nando's delivery boy rocked up at 12.30pm carrying enough spicy chicken wings to start his own kebab shop, and Arkwright III proceeded to stuff his face whilst simultaneously pitching to me - much to the embarrassment of his team of ugly, middle-aged northern development lackies (what happened to all the pretty girls?)

I just couldn't concentrate on anything with all the chicken grease around his chops. His big fat gay belly was jiggling about as he enthusiastically launched into his pitch.

"How often do you feel like hitting the missus? You know, a quick backhander. But can't!!" he said gnawing on a bone. "Well, NOW YOU CAN!!"

He glanced at me to gauge my first reactions to his Hot New Idea. I gave nothing away. My face was a blank. (A look I have spent years perfecting)

"We've unearthed this marriage councillor called Dr Janey Whistle from New Jersey who has spent 3 years perfecting a new and radical approach to help waring couples settle their scores: put them in a boxing ring and let them fight it out!"

I raised an eyebrow.

"And best of all - [he gave me a big fat gay knowing wink] - we call it 10 Rounds With The Wife".

I was starting to feel pretty nauseous at this point: "Er, great Simon. Napkin?"

After a quick dab, he continued. There was no stopping the man. In between shovelling mouthfuls of coleslaw into his gob with great dexterity, he managed to tell me "how fucking excited" he was about the 'Facebook revolution'. I didn't want to admit that I hadn't got a fucking clue what he was talking about so I just smiled and nodded.

"I was on there and this complete and utter NOBODY invited me to be in his gang. Can you believe it?!"

He then proceeded to pitch me Sit on my Face(book), a dreadful dating show based on this utterly meaningless internet networking site. I tried to explain to him that we needed something a bit less 'female skewed' and if he could think about a way of 'muscling it up' we might be on to something.

With a loud slurp of his Diet Coke he grinned and gave me two thumbs up.

What a prick.

Things kick off with Salopes Anglaises

Fifi hauled me into her office first thing this morning to talk about my first commission for the youth channel. I was expecting - at the very least - a pat on the fucking back, but (as I'm learning fast) that is not always the über bitch's style.

She said she had become "a little alarmed" that I had gone ahead and signed off the Ed Spec on Endemol's brilliant 8 x 60' Salopes Anglaises without consulting people like Martin Davidson and Emma Swain first.


"Fifi, I really didn't feel the need to have some sort of final consultation with Martin and his people on this one. Tim has a very accomplished team on the job - and their track record in hybrid reality formats speaks for itself"

Fifi asked why I hadn't just given them some development money and held back on turning it straight into a commission "...just under two weeks into the job, when surely you're still finding your feet?".

Fuck me. No wonder this Channel has stagnated under such a heavy weight of caution. I'm pretty sure this wasn't the sales pitch she hit me with way back in March when I was first sounded out for the job.

I smiled and assured her this would be a compelling, stand-out show which had "itchy", "reality' and "hit" written all over it. But as soon as I got back to the office I put a call in to Bertie, Mr Big Shot, and told him to name his price.

I can't afford to fuck up on this one.

Sunday, 3 June 2007

Hangover from the fucking depths of hell

Why do we exist? (Who cares) Will Bob Geldof save mankind? (Fucked if I know) Does Stephen Lambert like kinky sex? (I doubt it)

These were the random thoughts going through my head this afternoon as I 'disseminated my content’ (Fifi's expression, not mine) all over my computer keyboard looking at an erotic picture of HoustonHarley’s legs.

Sigh. Will I ever find the right girl for me? Everyone else is spending the day in the sun and here I sit, all alone in my 3/4 length trousers, hungover, and fantasising about someone I've been corresponding with though Toyboy Warehouse (when I should be working on the Autumn scheduling grid for tomorrow's Controller meeting).

Very tempted to arrange a date with this mysterious American born 'petrolhead'. But it's risky - what if she recognises me as the hugely important TV player that I am?

Need to put an urgent call into Michaela; in the past she's tried to fix me up with eligible girls, but it never, ever works. Either they are too pretty (and thus completely intimidate me deep-down) or too brainy (and I wipe the floor with them intellectually).


...There is someone I've got my eye on who's on Michaela's radar. She works for my old employers, and is about to launch *another* (yawn) campaign trying to get footballers to donate money to nurses (or something).

She's a total fox! Meow! And Jewish too, which will help tremendously when I take her to meet my Rabbi. I think having a drop dead gorgeous girlfriend who can also intellectually kick some arse in a dinner party scenario is a VERY good thing to have for my media brand.

In my new position, everyone is looking to me to provide a bit of arm candy. I'm young, successful, rich, handsome, not spoiled by years of drugs and sexual experimentation (that's important), AND I FUCKING RUN A TV CHANNEL!

What more could any girl ask for?

Saturday, 2 June 2007

Mug a Hoodie

The most important thing when one reaches the lofty position of a Channel Controller is to somehow keep yourself grounded. No matter what party, lunch, so-called 'glitzy' premiere or dull TX soirée I've been forced to attend, I always know I can 'come home' and spend some quality time with my non-TV friends.

They are real people, with real jobs and go about their day-to-day business in the real world. They don't work in television, and nor do they wish too! Importantly, I find it really useful to hear their opinions on some of the ideas floating around the Corporation (kind of like an unofficial focus group). They are just the sort of genuine, young, real people who tune in and watch My Channel.

I'll never forget troubleshooter extraordinaire (and all-round creative cock-meister) Bertie telling me one of his golden rules in the edit. When some other execs would be scampering off to their commisioning editors, fretting about their films, Bertie just sends a runner to the post office carrying a jiffy bag with the entire series on VHS. It's for Bertie's Auntie Brenda up in a council flat in Derby. She knows nothing about the craft of making compelling and hit-rating television, but boy does she have opinions! If it ain't good enough for Auntie Brenda, it ain't good enough for anyone [This is a man who's won a billion BAFTAs remember].

So here's a run down of my real friends I had over for dinner last night:

Olly I've known since we were about 6. He's a lawyer working for Herbert Smith, and a fucking good one too.

Harriet is Olly's wife. They've been together for 7 years and have just moved into a great 2-bed in Stoke Newington. She's taken a sabbatical from Ernst & Young to work with disadvantaged kids in Homerton. I've got a lot of respect for her.

And then there is Eddie, who lives life at a hundred miles an hour! I've always looked up at Eddie ever since I befriended him at Oxford. He branched out 18 months ago into the whole viral marketing thing and was telling us about the Mega-Deal he's landed with Smirnoff which involves him spending every Monday, Wednesday, Friday (and Saturday morning) in Prishtina.

And, as if to prove Bertie's point, Harriet made me almost spit out my Gü chocolate souffle when we got on to the topic of Dave Cameron's infamous hug a hoodie thing from a while back. Just right out of the blue, she said that there should be a TV format called Mug a Hoodie! Harriet thinks it would be rather daring to do a Trigger Happy-style show where ordinary, law abiding citizens who have suffered at the hands of hoodie rats get their own back - obviously with full police backing. They are filmed undercover stealing a hoodie's mobile phone, iPod, wallet (and any potential weapons they might be carrying) from underneath his nose, and right on his home turf (we can set it "somewhere in Peckham or E11" she says).

It's ironic, isn't it? If I'd been pitched this by a desperate Indie Exec, I'd probably yawn and just carry on doodling in my notepad and continue to stare into thin air. But because this came from Harriet - who let us not forget, is actually sacrificing her whole fucking career at the moment to work on the streets of London with REAL kids from broken homes - I've got to take it seriously. Plus everyone else really, really liked it (and that wasn't just the 4 bottles of Shiraz talking!)

Will give the idea A-S-A-fucking-P to my in-house lackies to kick around and work up into a spiky returnable 60' format.

V pleased with the results of my dinner party. Just goes to show - REAL people are so much more interesting than TELEVISION people.

Friday, 1 June 2007

Attack of the scary diversity lady

The Corporation's diversity executive barged into my office – completely unannounced – just as I was about to settle in and secretly catch-up with last week's final episode of Lost. She looked vaguely familiar but I couldn't place her...

Somehow (there must be a leak in my office) she has got wind of my Brown-Task-Force-Initiative to rid the BBC of its Asian bias. Before I could even introduce myself, she was challenging me about 'what the hell I thought I was fucking doing?'.....blah blah blah 'how dare I not consult with her' ya-da-ya-da-ya-da 'no evidence to back up these claims' etc. et-fucking-cetra. The woman is ferocious.

These 'diversity executives' don't have much of a sense of humour do they?!

I held my hands up.

"Hey, I’m a Jewish minority too - remember. I know how it feels to be marginalised in society. To see unadvertised jobs go to the 'right crowd', to feel like an outsider all the time. I’m just trying to help."

With that I gave my very best shit-eating Tony Blair grin.

She raised her eyes to the roof and shoulder barged me on her way out.

Perry Mansell scares the shit out of me

I had a real shock to the system first thing this morning. Picked up an email on my Blackberry from the infamous Perry Mansell whilst I was in the bath - it was all "fuck this" and "cunt that", which astonished me a little (coming at just 6.45 in the morning). He was ranting about the fact that My Channel hadn't commissioned another low budget, late-night series of Dickinson Moss getting all hot-under-the-collar about his favourite Japanese toys or something, and that he wanted "answers now, you fucking Jewish cunt face".

I didn't quite know the best way to respond, because obviously Dickinson is an MIT (Massively Important Talent) for the Corporation, but I cannot (and will not) have My Channel used as a late-night outpost for vanity pieces like this. How would Peter like it if I took 'An Evening With...' off his hands and gave him Dickinson Moss's Japanese Wankfest Weekend instead?

Once safely ensconced in my 6th floor office and enjoying the first of my many skinny lattes-on-ice of the day, I couldn't help but confess to Anthony just how shaken I'd been in the bath by the Perry Mansell mail.

Incredibly my PA smirked, and told me to ignore it. "Ignore it? Are you fucking joking?? This is the agent of Dickinson Moss we're talking about!" I shot back.

With astonishing arrogance, Anthony proceeded to pick up my Blackberry and double check the time of Mansell's original message: "Don't you know about Perry?! Look, they taped 'An Evening With...' in Studio 3 last night and so he'll have gone off afterwards to a very seedy Marble Arch hotel and spent the whole night going apeshit on coke. He was completely cained whilst writing this. Honestly, just ignore it. Because by the time he wakes up today, he certainly won't remember sending you this."

Fucking hell. I can see that maybe Anthony is going to be more of an asset than I first thought.