ITV Gala 2015

Last week it was ITV’s turn to talk 2016 and they didn’t disappoint at the star-studded inaugural ITV Gala. Hosted at the London Palladium, ITV was not shy in flaunting their talent with over 100 famous faces including the likes of Jonathan Ross, Amanda Holden, Martin Clunes and even Simon Cowell turning up to celebrate 60 years of ITV and showcase the best of what we can look forward to next year.

The opening segment was very much the Bradley Walsh show, with the presenter in his element ribbing the many famous faces dotted around in the audience. Having to follow that act were the very polished Kelly Williams and Simon Daglish, the Head and Deputy Head of ITV Commercial, who announced three key headlines:

1)      ITV Adventures – a new content marketing offering focusing on short form content

2)      ITV Hub – the new one-stop destination for ITV content, more details here

3)      ITV AdSync Plus – the new initiative with Radium One syncing TV ads with online ads, essentially ITV’s first foray into programmatic

Following the commercial announcements, we got to hear about the best of the new stuff planned for our screens. Amanda Holden cooed at Director of Television Peter Fincham as he took the audience through what looked like a very strong drama slate. The highlights included Churchill’s Secret starring Dumbledore himself; Michael Gambon. Victoria, a period drama no doubt earmarked to replace a certain Downton Abbey, which will follow the early life of Queen Victoria, from her accession to the throne at the tender age of 18 and the very tabloid headline friendly return of 90s favourite Cold Feet.

With the reliable entertainment juggernauts all set to return, some new factual formats fronted by Davina McCall and Emma Willis and live Six Nations Rugby added to live Euro 2016 coverage, the breadth and investment into the schedule cannot be faulted.

There is no doubt ITV threw the kitchen sink at last night’s event, from the production of the video packages, to the quantity and quality of talent whom they were able to call on to attend and judging by the tabloid headlines this morning, to the party they put on afterwards! This blogger definitely wouldn’t know anything about that last bit though. And he definitely didn’t get home later than planned. Honestly…

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Carl Connaughton

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