The cancellation of BBC stalwart drama Doctors has had a huge impact on the UK’s TV community and the Writers Guild of Great Britiain (WGGB) has now launched a campaign to save the show.
The WGGB says it is in talks with the BBC and is consulting with other unions. As part of the campaign, it is urging people to write to their local MPs and ask them to ask BBC Director General Tim Davie to reverse the decision.
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“The continuing drama series BBC Doctors is to close after 23 years – a terrible loss to the UK writing community and to audiences,” said a WGGB statement. “The closure of another drama series following the cancellation of Holby City two years ago leaves a big hole in the drama slate and in the pockets of Doctors writers, some of whom have written for the show for years.”
A petition set up by fans urging a reverse of the decision has amassed nearly 5,000 signatures. The WGGB is also asking fans to share social media assets and is offering advice and support to Doctors writers. It said more updates are incoming.
The BBC announced the “difficult decision” last week after 23 years and it has had the community up in arms, with the show having blooded dozens of UK scribes and employed hundreds of production staff. The BBC put the move down to “super inflation in drama production” and has said the money saved will be reinvested in programing from the local Birmingham region.
Deadline revealed yesterday that the BBC is developing Peaky Blinders creator Steven Knight‘s drama based in a Birmingham university, which could feasibly be funded by the Doctors saving, although no decisions have been made.
Airing in the daytime and produced by BBC Studios out of Birmingham, Doctors follows the goings-on of a fictional hospital and university campus surgery in the West Midlands. It has aired nearly 4,500 episodes and at present will conclude next December.
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