Meet The Commissioners with Ben Stephenson and Gub Neal (bios below)
Ben Stephenson and Gub Neal offer their unique perspectives on what writers need to be doing in order to make their projects attractive, ‘must have’ acquisitions. And these are the guys who ought to know! Ben is the BBC’s Head of Drama Commissioner and Gub is an award winning producer who, in his time, has headed up the Drama departments at both Channel 4 and Granada. This session promises to offer invaluable insights into the importance of writing for the ‘buying client’ as well as the ‘paying audience’.
BEN STEPHENSON - Head of Drama Commissioning for BBC
Ben joined the BBC in 2004 as Head of Development, Independent Drama and subsequently became Head of Drama Commissioning in September 2008.
Commissions include: 5 DAUGHTERS, SMALL ISLAND, THE GRUFFALO, LENNON NAKED, LUTHER, A PASSIONATE WOMAN, SHERLOCK, THE SILENCE, WORRIED ABOUT THE BOY, WOMEN WE LOVED. Upcoming dramas include: SINGLE FATHER, ACCUSED, OUTCASTS, AURELIO ZEN, TOAST, THE SHADOW LINE, THE CRIMSON PETAL and WHITE ROOM AT THE TOP.
Ben got his start studying Drama at Manchester University before spending three years at Granada Television where he was script editor on a variety of dramas including HEARTBEAT, LONDON'S BURNING and BLOOD STRANGERS. Ben then worked at Channel 4 where he was Editor, Series for over two years working on dramas such as NO ANGELS, TEACHERS and BURIED. Before joining the BBC he worked as a development producer at Shed Productions and Tiger Aspect.
GUB NEAL - former Head of Drama at Ch4
Gub is an award-winning producer, formerly Head of Drama at Channel 4 and before that Controller of Drama at Granada. There he co-created CRACKER and won an Emmy for PRIME SUSPECT.
Highlights at Channel 4 include YOUNG PERSON’S GUIDE TO BECOMING A ROCKSTAR, QUEER AS FOLK and the prestigious millennium show LONGITUDE.
Prior to co-founding Artists Studio in 2009, he founded and ran Box TV where his productions included; TRUST, GUNPOWDER TREASON AND PLOT, NO DIRECTION HOME, THE LAST ENEMY, WIND IN THE WILLOWS (both BBC/WGBH) and the Prix Italia winning SUNDAY.