'Coronation Street' commissioner Sir Denis Forman dies, aged 95

Dennis Forman

Sir Denis Forman, the former Granada TV chairman who was responsible for putting Coronation Street on our screens in 1960, has died age 95.

It was his work in television that made Forman most proud; during his remarkable 50-year career he acted as the director of the British Film Institute and deputy chairman of the Royal Opera House. 

One of the founding executives of Granada TV in the mid 1950s, he bought a new generation of programmes that helped to redefine British TV, including the long-running soap, 'Coronation Street'.

During an interview with The Guardian, Forman spoke of the famous soap: “I recognised its merit and I supported the move to get it on air, but I was not 100% behind it. I was nervous. Everyone was. Look at those accents. Anyone in broadcasting reading one of those scripts would say: “Its impossible.””

Forman was also responsible for bringing such shows as 'Brideshead Revisited' and 'The Jewel in the Crown'.

In an interview last year with the Guardian, Forman said:” We had a determination to democratise television, so that the viewer could share the political processes; a determination to make television funny, interesting and relevant [...]”

ITV's director of television Peter Finchman said on Monday: “Sir Denis Forman was one of the great pioneers of British broadcasting. He made a last contribution to quality drama and investigative journalism [...]”

Ray Fitzwalter, form editor and later executive producer of World in Action, said: “Denis was a brave leader and a pioneer on the commercial side of the television industry.”

Forman also wrote three volumes of memoirs and several books about music.

- itv
- Coronation Street

Written by: MatthewWarcup
Feb 26th, 2013, 8:38 am

Images courtesy of BBC

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