The project concerns television fiction produced in the UK from 1955-94. It will analyse how the material spaces of production (in TV studios and on location) conditioned the aesthetic forms of programmes, and how fictional spaces represented on screen negotiated the opportunities and constraints of studio and exterior space, film and video technologies, and liveness and recording. Specific foci for the research include BBC studios in London and the regions, the sound-stages at Elstree where programmes for ITV were made, and location shooting of drama series and serials in the period. Genres of programme studied include popular drama such as the police and adventure series, science fiction, period costume drama and sitcom.
The research will involve significant archival work, and will produce a historiography of production spaces in British television and connect this spatial and institutional history with a historiography of television style. Fictional space will be understood as a component of mise-en-scene, where the material space of production impacts on modes of performance, styles of camera work, and the significance of sound environments and visual design. Material spaces of production will be understood as a component of the economic, institutional and political histories of British television, where the availability of production space, its architectural design and resourcing, technologies of camera and sound, and the cultural meanings of these conditions of production changed over time and were negotiated among professional personnel in the television industry.
- Costume and space: Inspector Morse in his pyjamas
- Landscape in the Studio: Play for Today: Desert of Lies (BBC, 13/3/84)
- The Stripped-Down Studio Space: Play for Today: Psy-Warriors (BBC, 12/5/81) & Centre Play: The Saliva Milkshake (BBC, 6/1/75)
- Mixing Genres in the Studio: Playhouse: The Journal of Bridget Hitler (BBC2, 6/2/81)
- Studio trickery: Censored Scenes From King Kong (BBC, 1973) & Play For Today: The After Dinner Joke (BBC, 14/02/78)