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Arena: Television


We have produced a Style Guide to help editors follow a standard format when editing a listing. If you are unsure how best to edit this programme please take a moment to read it.
When is a Play Not a Play?
' What I object to in the present upsurge of drama documentaries is the fact that the television companies are trying to seduce the audience and say this is real'
Joseph Hone , television critic
This special edition of Arena examines the current controversy over the boundaries between drama and documentary and looks at the problems which face programme makers who use the conventions of fiction to represent ' the facts '.
' I always say to our people go out and dig the truth out and it will be our truth, because the truth is always partial and so are we '
Tony Garnett , drama producer, Law and Order
'... it's not a documentary because they're not the real people, they're not even the real names, they're not even the real places ...'
Paul Watson , documentary producer, Breakaway Girls
Other contributors include Jack Gold , Denis Mitchell
Quentin Crisp , Alan Clarke
Jim Allen and Alasdair Milne


Unknown: Joseph Hone
Unknown: Tony Garnett
Unknown: Paul Watson
Unknown: Jack Gold
Unknown: Denis Mitchell
Unknown: Quentin Crisp
Unknown: Alan Clarke
Unknown: Jim Allen
Unknown: Alasdair Milne
Unknown: Philip Bonham
Editor: Alan Lewens
Director: Nigel Williams
Producer: Alan Yentob

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About this project

This site contains the BBC listings information which the BBC printed in Radio Times between 1923 and 2009. You can search the site for BBC programmes, people, dates and Radio Times editions.

We hope it helps you find information about that long forgotten BBC programme, research a particular person or browse your own involvement with the BBC.

Through the listings, you will also be able to use the Genome search function to find thousands of radio and TV programmes that are already available to view or listen to on the BBC website.

There are more than 5 million programme listings in Genome. This is a historical record of the planned output and the BBC services of any given time. It should be viewed in this context and with the understanding that it reflects the attitudes and standards of its time - not those of today.

Feedback about Arena: Television, BBC Two England, 22.55, 17 April 1978
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This internal version of Genome, which includes all the magazine covers, images and articles as well as the programme listings from the Radio Times, is different to the version of BBC Genome that is available externally/to the public. It is only available inside the BBC network.

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