BBC Appoints Independent Reviewers In Jimmy Savile Case
The BBC is pressing on with its investigations in the Jimmy Savile scandal that involves serious allegations of child sexual abuse against the late TV host. The corporation named former Court of Appeal judge Dame Janet Smith to lead the independent review into the allegations as they relate to the culture and practices of the BBC during the time Savile worked there and whether today’s policies are up to date. The group also appointed former head of Sky News Nick Pollard to oversee a review into Newsnight, the BBC current affairs program which shelved a segment investigating Savile last December. The Pollard Review will also look at the BBC’s handling of material that might have been of interest to the police or relevant authorities. BBC executive board member Dame Fiona Reynolds said, “These reviews will demonstrate the BBC’s determination to open itself fully to scrutiny from independent experts, emphasising our belief that the basis of the public’s trust is full openness and accountability.”
Australia’s Nine Staves Off Administration With Debt Restructure
Nine Entertainment‘s creditors reached a deal Wednesday to restructure $3.3B in debt. The senior lenders, led by U.S. hedge funds Oaktree Capital and Apollo Global Management, were owed $2.3B. They will now emerge with a 95.5% stake in the company. The mezzanine lenders led by Goldman Sachs, which were owed $1B, will receive a 4.5% stake valued at around $100M. CVC Asia Pacific, which bought Nine from James Packer for $5.5B in debt and equity in 2007, exits with nothing. Nine’s board was desperate to avoid going into receivership, which would have imperilled its $100M a year programming deal with Warner Bros. and contracts to televise National Rugby League matches and Australian Test cricket. “We have a fully capitalized business,” Nine’s chief executive David Gyngell told reporters. – Don Groves
European Discovery Nominees Announced
Five films have been nominated for the European Discovery 2012 FIPRESCI prize which is handed out to a first-time director as part of the European Film Awards. The nominees are Denmark’s Teddy Bear directed by Mads Matthiesen; Rufus Norris’ UK film Broken, The Netherlands’ Kauwboy from Boudewijn Koole; Twilight Portrait from Russia’s Angelina Nikonova and Reported Missing by German director Jan Speckenbach. The European Film Awards take place in Malta on Dec. 1.