Jim Grant on how Granada began to change

The old days were great at Granada, especially because, as I said earlier, Granada had been this brave documentary producer. But I sensed when I got there that they were getting a little weary of that, a little scared of it. The British Steel episode, which I’m certain the archive covers extensively, have been… you know, that was looking at it at this remove… you know, it’s just a little piece of history, but at the time it was truly scary. It was before I got there, but it was a truly scary thing. You know, the weight of government against you, and the Bernsteins that could have been personally bankrupted. It was super high stakes, super brave. But when I got there, there was the slight sense that they were getting tired and a little scared of the exposure. And so, what they were going to do was concentrate on drama. So, when I got there, they had just made Hard Times by Charles Dickens, with Patrick Allen as Gradgrind. And that was the first of a magnificent run of drama production. It was as if they were pivoting towards drama. The Patrick Allen thing gave us a nightmare because back then there was a rule that you could not use a commercial if one of the actors from the surrounding programme was doing the voiceover. And, Patrick Allen, with that dark brown voice of his, he did practically all the commercials. And so, there was always tremendous artist clashes with the commercials during that show. I remember that very well

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