Amnesty International UK Announce the Launch of Amnesty TV - TV That Thinks

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Amnesty International is set to launch an online television channel which aims to humanise activism through entertainment and has been developed by a creative team which includes Anthony Burrill.

To coincide with the 50th anniversary of the movement, Amnesty International UK announces the launch of Amnesty TV – an online factual entertainment platform produced by the people who made News Wipe and the Inbetweeners.

Launching on 15th July, Amnesty TV will use popular satire and entertainment to reach grass roots audiences, marking a significant development in how Amnesty communicates and engages with the online generation. Amnesty TV aims to ‘humanise’ activism and take it into the mainstream, using techniques from popular entertainment. Its aim is to help inspire a global movement around Amnesty’s human rights campaigns.

Hosted online via multiple platforms including a dedicated YouTube channel, the magazine-style shows will blend a wealth of compelling, informative features with provocative campaign stunts, satirical comedy, short documentaries, human rights film previews/reviews, polemics and news. The online TV channel will bring Amnesty’s core messages about human rights to new global audiences.

Amnesty TV will be produced by a new in-house team of creative writers, film makers and digital artists who will work in collaboration with Amnesty’s high profile supporters, including Ralph Fiennes, Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales and Vanessa Redgrave. The fortnightly shows will combine the urgency of Banksy, the ingenuity of the Yes Men and the wit of Eddie Izzard to inform, educate, mobilise and campaign on human rights. The Amnesty TV creative team includes:

  •     Mike Bradley – Producer/Director: former producer/director at Charlie Brooker’s Zeppotron, he produced ‘News Wipe’ and ‘Screen Wipe’ among other shows.
  •     Neil Boorman – Editor: former magazine editor and columnist and author of ‘Bonfire Of The Brands’. His Channel 4 show ‘Shoreditch Tw*t’ won a Montreaux Comedy Award.
  •     Jess Bendien – Talent: Guest Booker at Never Mind The Buzzocks, producer and talent booker for Comic Relief.
  •     Iain Morris – Writer: former commissioning editor at C4 and co-creator of the Inbetweeners.
  •     Modern Toss: Mick and Jon write and illustrate their infamous Modern Toss comic strips for The Guardian and Private Eye.
  •     Heydon Prowse (Don’t Panic): investigative journalist and stunt filmmaker who sparked the Alan Duncan expenses scandal (2010). He is editor of online magazine Don’t Panic.
  •     Chris Atkins: Writer/Director of ‘Taking Liberties’ and ‘Starsuckers’, investigative feature films that explore the abuse of political privilege and journalistic power in British society.
  •     Robert Thompson: cartoonist and a comic institution in the UK. His strips appear regularly in Private Eye, The Spectator, The Times, The Telegraph and The Independent.
  •     Nat Saunders and Chris Heywood (Misery Bear): writer/director duo for Smack The Pony, Big Train and creators of online series and YouTube favourite, ‘Misery Bear’.
  •     Anthony Burrill: internationally renowned illustrator and designer, installation artist and curator working across a range of media, including posters, moving image and 3-D work.

Speaking on the innovation, Amnesty International UK’s Head of Brand and Events, Andy Hackman, said: “Amnesty International’s aim is to connect people and unite them behind a common belief that people coming together can effect real, tangible change. We believe that Amnesty TV's combination of entertaining content and inspiring stories will help us engage and mobilise a new generation of supporters.”
Amnesty TV will produce around 30 minutes of core AV content per month, with a different theme each episode, which will exist in different lengths and formats to allow multiple platform distribution.

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Steve Ballinger