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The long 18th century on screen: A Q&A about working as a historian behind the scenes with film & TV

Tuesday 26 April 2022, 4.30PM to 5.30pm

Speaker(s): Hannah Greig

Image credit: Netflix

This seminar is designed to allow us to talk informally about the benefits and pitfalls of academics collaborating with film and TV companies to create period dramas. I'll give a short introduction but then hope we can have a robust discussion about how history is represented on screen and the relationship between academia and period dramas. So do please come with all your questions!

My career as a historian has, by chance, evolved as a hybrid career and I have consistently worked alongside TV and film productions as well as working within academia. My first consultancy role was with the 2008 film 'The Duchess' and since then I have worked on additional feature films including 'The Favourite (2019), 'Mr Malcolm's List' (forthcoming); TV series including, Death Comes to Pemberley, Jamaica Inn, Gunpowder, Poldark, Sanditon and the Netflix hit Bridgerton.

In the 14 years I have been working in the creative industry we have seen some significant changes including the use of consultancy teams, the emergence of the streaming platforms, a shifting emphasis on long form (TV series) versus short form (feature film) storytelling, and different approaches to alt history, historical fiction and colour blind and colour conscious casting.

We might consider the impact these dramas and such changes have on public perceptions of the long eighteenth century. Are period dramas a gateway to the past or do they mislead the viewer into mistaking fiction for fact? Does 'accuracy' matter? And what role does academic scholarship play in the emergence of the narratives that we see on screen?

Book tickets

Location: Zoom

Admission: Online