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16/12/2010

BBC Marks Decade Of Afghanistan War

All things military are coming to the small screen soon with the announcement by Danny Cohen, Controller of BBC One and BBC Three, of new programmes, Would You Join The Army? and a major anniversary series, Our War - 10 Years In Afghanistan.
These are two new factual commissions for 2011 that will focus on army life for the channel's 16-34 audience.
Would You Join The Army? (5x60') is to be a series charting the lives of new recruits and their families over 18 months, from their very first day in the army to frontline combat operations in Afghanistan.
As the new recruits discover what joining the army really involves, some wonder whether it was the right decision for them.
Mixing footage from Afghanistan with emotional first-person accounts of army life, Would You Join The Army? seeks to ask what it takes to join the British Infantry at such a dangerous time by exploring the complex reasons behind new recruits' decisions to enrol, the process of training and the inevitable impact on family life and loved ones.
The executive producers for Lion Television are Donna Clark and Jeremy Mills and the series producer and director is Dov Freedman.
Our War - 10 Years In Afghanistan is a (3x60') programme that marks the 10-year anniversary of the war in Afghanistan by telling its history through the footage and testimony of the young soldiers themselves.
BBC Three has been given unprecedented access and co-operation from the Ministry of Defence and the armed forces to tell the story of the ongoing conflict in a brand new way.
Powerful, unmediated and utterly unique, Our War - 10 Years In Afghanistan is the definitive history of 10 years worth of living and fighting in Afghanistan. The executive producer is Colin Barr for Vision Productions.
Danny Cohen said: "We believe that these two projects will be a powerful way to engage young people with the bravery and sacrifice of British soldiers - many of whom are in their teens and twenties themselves."
Jana Bennett, Director of BBC Vision, added: "BBC Three has proven that serious factual content is in demand and as a channel it is not afraid of asking important questions, shining a light on serious issues through challenging factual programming.
"Coupled with the forthcoming Sandhurst documentary series on BBC Four, viewers will get the opportunity to make informed decisions about army life and foreign affairs through frontline experience with the BBC."
The recently announced series will be a documentary series for BBC Four featuring unparalleled access to Sandhurst Royal Military Academy for officers.
Filmed over a year the series will follow one class of cadets through the world-famous 12-month course.
The series will show exactly what it takes to turn a group of ordinary young men and women into extraordinary leaders, capable of leading troops in a British Army operating in Afghanistan.
BBC Three is now the most-watched channel for 16 to-34-year-olds for the hours it is on.
It is the only digital channel tackling serious documentaries for 16 to-34-year-olds which has seen the average audience for a documentary grow by 80% since 2008.
But, this is not the first time the channel has covered army life - earlier this year, Girls On The Frontline gained unique access to a group of young women serving in the British army.
Last week, in My Boyfriend The War Hero, Vicky and Craig talked about the change to their lives as Craig returned home from serving in Afghanistan as a triple amputee.
Would You Join The Army? and Our War – 10 Years In Afghanistan have been commissioned by Features, Formats and Specialist Factual Commissioning Editor for BBC Three, Harry Lansdown.
Sandhurst is an Icon Films production, executive producers are Laura Marshall and Harry Marshall and the BBC executive producer is Sam Anthony.
It was commissioned for BBC Four by Charlotte Moore, BBC Documentary Commissioning Editor.
(BMcC/GK)
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