BBC StudiosBBC Studios’ Creative Directors Samantha Anstiss and Sam Bickley’s newly named creative label Auntie Productions has won two new BBC Two commissions.
They have won six series since they launched their joint label two years ago. Sitting within BBC Studios, working to Entertainment, Music and Events Director Roger Leatham, with a cross genre remit, they have a broad range of developments on their slate ranging from factual drama to factual entertainment and documentary.

The two six part series ordered by Tom McDonald, Head of Commissioning, Natural History and Specialist Factual, Patrick Holland, Channel Editor for BBC Two and Tracy Forsyth, Genre Director, Factual Entertainment and Entertainment for BBC Worldwide are:

In Your Ear

A documentary format that every week follows two Brits going through one of the most challenging weeks of their lives, such as starting a new job, surviving a newborn, or bouncing back from a life changing disability. In a world of increasingly virtual friendships and isolated ways of living, some serious old school wisdom is badly needed. Coming to their rescue is a cast of wise sages from around the UK and the globe, who are on hand to offer new perspectives, diverse cultural wisdom and advice in their own quirky and very entertaining way.

Inside The World’s Most Extraordinary Hotels

An immersive specialist factual documentary series that follows Giles Coren and Monica Galetti as they travel the globe including behind-the-scenes in some of the planet’s most awe-inspiring hotels, getting to know their staff and local communities. Whether it’s a mega city employing thousands of workers, is made of ice or floats in a cloud forest, from dawn to dusk Giles and Monica will spend time alongside the often invisible workforce that performs human and logistical miracles every day to deliver experiences we didn’t even know we wanted.

Roger Leatham, Director, Entertainment, Music and Events, BBC Studios says: “Factual Entertainment is a really important and exciting area for us and Samantha and Sam have a strong track record in commissioning and producing bold, contemporary, creative ideas, across genres. These latest series have real warmth and wit, as well as a big sense of adventure and I can’t wait to see what new programmes and formats they develop next under their label Auntie.”

Samantha Anstiss and Sam Bickley said: “We are delighted to be making these innovative formats in a creative environment with some really talented people.”

Both former commissioners have a track record in award winning programmes. Samantha Anstiss has commissioned programmes that include BAFTA winning Life and Death Row, BAFTA nominated Keeping Britain Alive and The Call Centre, Pound Shop Wars and People Like Us. While Sam Bickley has commissioned BAFTA winning Don’t Take My Baby, The Food Inspectors, Beckham: Into the Unknown, Reggie Yates: Extreme Russia and World’s Toughest Jobs. Their Head of Development, Charlie Nicholson, has created ideas across genres, from documentaries and specialist factual to formats, fact entertainment and factual dramas, working at Endemol, Oxford Film and Television and Blast! Films before joining Samantha and Sam to set up Auntie in BBC Studios.

Elliot Reed, Commissioning Editor Specialist Factual, is the Commissioning Editor for In Your Ear and Craig Hunter, Commissioning Editor Specialist Factual, is the Commissioning Editor for Inside The World’s Most Extraordinary Hotels.

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By Expat