Leading TV producer Andy Harries to be honoured by TV and audio writers at Broadcasting Press Guild Lunch

Andy Harries, one of UK television’s leading producers and directors and the co-founder of Left Bank Pictures, is to be honoured this week at the 50th annual Broadcasting Press Guild Awards, chosen by journalists who write about television, streaming and audio.

Harries will receive the BPG’s prestigious Harvey Lee Award for Outstanding Contribution to Broadcasting for a career spanning more than four decades and including such television classics as The Crown, The Royle Family, Prime Suspect and Cold Feet as producer and Arena and The South Bank Show as director.

Harries will receive the award at the 50th annual BPG awards lunch at The Royal Horseguards Hotel in Whitehall, London, on Thursday, March 21. The Harvey Lee Award is sponsored by Warner Bros. Discovery and is the gift of the BPG Executive Committee.

The award celebrates a career that began as a news reporter on the Peterborough Evening Telegraph before moving into TV as a researcher for Granada Television in Manchester in 1976. There, Harries worked off and on-screen at Granada Reports and also on the prestigious World In Action before becoming a freelance in 1981.

His early work ranged from directing Channel 4’s Emmy-nominated documentary series Africa, making films in Peru and directing and producing on both The South Bank Show and Arena. He co-founded his first production company, Sleeping Partners, with Paul Greengrass at the end of the 1980s, working with talent such as previous Harvey Lee Award-winner Lenny Henry, Jonathan Ross and Peter Morgan.

Harries became controller of comedy at Granada in 1992 where he was behind two Caroline Aherne classics, The Mrs Merton Show and The Royle Family. Next came Cold Feet and his first panel show, Mel and Sue’s Casting Couch. In 2000, he became Granada’s controller of drama, where he produced hit TV shows including the return of Prime Suspect and Cracker, The Street, The Deal, Dirty Filthy Love, Longford and 2006 film The Queen – which not only won Helen Mirren an Oscar but also sparked the idea for the Netflix hit series The Crown a decade later.

In 2007, Harries co-founded Left Bank Pictures, which would become one of the UK’s most successful independent production companies – with programmes including Wallander with Kenneth Branagh, Mad Dogs, Strike Back and another detective procedural DCI Banks, as well as the third part of Peter Morgan’s ‘Tony Blair Trilogy’, The Special Relationship. Left Bank Pictures also found success at the cinema, with Harries serving as producer on The Damned United and Stan & Ollie.

In 2016, The Crown became Harries’ biggest TV project – telling the story of the modern royal family from 1947 to 2005 and winning critical acclaim and reaching huge audiences around the world. In addition, he has been able to train the next TV generation, using an auction of The Crown’s props, costumes and furniture to fund at least 50 scholarships at the National Film & Television School. Harries was awarded an OBE in 2019 for services to film and television.

The BPG’s chair Manori Ravindran said: “There is no doubt that Andy Harries is a titan among TV producers who has proven himself time and again over the last five decades. The range of his programme successes reflect not only a flair for the creative, but also a knack for building special relationships with generational talents — of which he is one himself.”

The BPG Television, Streaming and Audio Awards are highly prized by programme-makers because they are selected independently by journalists, critics and previewers who write about TV, radio, streaming and podcasts. The awards lunch on Thursday will be attended by award winners, BPG members, and leading content and audio executives.

For more information about the Broadcasting Press Guild, including a full list of winners over the past 50 years, visit
http://www.broadcastingpressguild.org/2014/03/25/history-of-the-broadcasting-press-guild

 

Notes to editors

  1. The remaining award winners will be announced at the 50th BPG Awards lunch at Royal Horseguards Hotel in Whitehall, London, on Thursday March 21st 2024 and simultaneously on Twitter @BPGPressGuild #BPGAwards. Winners have been informed in advance and places at the lunch are by invitation only. A full news release about the winners, embargoed till 2pm on Thursday, will be available on our website: www.broadcastingpressguild.org
  2. The BPG Twitter handle for the Awards is #BPGAwards @BPGPressGuild.
  3. The Broadcasting Press Guild was founded in 1974 and has more than 110 members. They are journalists who specialise in covering television, radio and the media, and include critics, previewers, media correspondents and feature writers from national newspapers, broadcasters and leading trade journals and websites.
  4. Harvey Lee (1950-1991) – after whom the award is named – was the media correspondent for the Daily Telegraph and a leading light in the BPG throughout the 1980s. Previous winners of the BPG’s Harvey Lee Award, for an outstanding contribution to broadcasting, include Sir Lenny Henry, Moira Stuart, John Humphrys, Nicholas Parsons, Sir Terry Wogan, Cilla Black, Melvyn Bragg, Andrew Davies, Sir David Frost, Michael Grade, Norma Percy, Biddy Baxter, Edward Barnes, Phil Redmond, Beryl Vertue, Tony Warren, Anne Wood, John Lloyd, Jon Snow and Jeremy Paxman. See more details at
    http://www.broadcastingpressguild.org/bpgawards/harvey-lee/
  1. The 50th BPG Awards are being sponsored by some of the most influential names in the industry: BBC Studios, Netflix, Pact, Prime Video and Warner Bros. Discovery. 

 

Further information: Adrian Lobb, BPG: 07986 379 452 or adrianlobb1@gmail.com

 

Information about our sponsors

BBC Studios is a world-renowned content studio and channels & streaming business, powered by British creativity, with a reach that touches audiences in every corner of the globe. BBC Studios is sponsoring the BPG Awards Red Carpet.

Netflix is one of the world’s leading entertainment services with over 260 million paid memberships in over 190 countries enjoying TV series, films and games across a wide variety of genres and languages. Members can play, pause and resume watching, as much as they want, anytime, anywhere, and can change their plans at any time. Netflix is co-sponsor of the BPG Awards Drinks Reception.

Pact is the UK screen sector trade body representing and supporting independent production and distribution companies. Pact is sponsoring the BPG for the second consecutive year and is co-sponsor of the BPG Awards 2024 Drinks Reception.

Prime Video membership provides access to thousands of popular movies, TV shows, award-winning Originals, sports, and exclusive channels like discovery+, STARZPLAY, and Paramount+, with the added benefit of special deals for Prime Video members using the rent and buy feature to access new-release movies and TV series. Prime Video is sponsoring two BPG Talent Awards: BPG Emerging Creators Award and the BPG Breakthrough Award.

Warner Bros. Discovery is a leading global media and entertainment company that creates and distributes the world’s most differentiated and complete portfolio of content and brands across television, film, streaming and games with globally known brands including CNN, Cartoon Network, Discovery Channel, Friends, the Harry Potter films, HBO, TNT Sports. In the UK & Ireland WBD brings audiences 22 linear channels and is the streaming home of factual entertainment and premium sport through discovery+. 

WBD UK & Ireland is a proud supporter of the BPG Awards for the second consecutive year sponsoring the Harvey Lee Award for Outstanding Contribution to Broadcasting.

ENDS