14 June 2024 The Irish Film & Television Network
Jockeys, John Ford And Bláthnáid Ní Chofaigh Soap Make TG4 Autumn Schedule
30 Aug 2012 : By Eva Hall
Máire Treasa Ní Dhubhghaill and Colmán Mac Séalaigh who present ‘Ponc’
Homegrown documentaries prove to be TG4’s biggest draw as a record number of Irish-language projects were unveiled at the broadcaster’s autumn launch yesterday (August 29).

Documentaries such as ‘Lón sa Spéir’, ‘Dhá Chúirt’ and ’Basú’ will air in primetime slots in the station’s Cogar section, while Sé Merry Doyle’s acclaimed documentary ‘John Ford: Dreaming the Quiet Man’ and an Anglo-Norman invasion-based film ‘Cluain Tarbh’ are included in the Anamnocht slot.

‘Lón sa Spéir’, a documentary exploring the Irish history behind the iconic 1932 photograph ‘Lunch atop a Skyscraper’, already received its world premiere at this year’s Galway Film Fleadh. The Sónta production travelled to New York to complete production, with Irish actress Fionnula Flanagan on board as narrator.

‘Basú’, a five-part Civil War series, will explore the history behind the execution of Republicans by the Free State Government in 1922.

‘John Ford: Dreaming the Quiet Man’, a revealing documentary that features interviews with stars of the classic film, such as Maureen O’Hara, and friends of John Ford, including Peter Bogdanovich, is expected to air on Christmas Day, 60 years after the 1952 film.

Launching the Irish-language broadcaster’s latest schedule at the Convention Centre in Dublin, TG4 ‘GAA Beo’ presenter Micheal O’Domhnaill said: “In essence what we’re trying to do is tell you a story.”

These stories will be told in the form of new entertainment shows such as ‘Jockey Eile’, a new reality-based show which follows young jockeys around the country in the hopes of finding Ireland’s brightest prospect, presented by Seán Bán Breathnach; ‘Ó Tholg go Tolg’, a reality show which follows two young Irish women couch-surf their way across Europe relying on the kindness of strangers and the internet, and ‘I mBarr do Shláinte’, a nine-part health promotion series which discusses common illnesses such as MRSA, Diabetes, Crohn’s Disease and Malaria, by talking to patients who live with them.

Popular long-running Irish-language soap ‘Ros na Rún’ returns for its 17th season, with new plot lines involving deceit, murder, stalking, and a previously unknown twin sister.

Former RTÉ ‘Afternoon Show’ host Bláthnáid Ní Chofaigh makes her debut soap appearance in ‘Crisis Eile’, the follow up to season one of ‘An Crisis’. The drama filmed in Dublin and Brussels in June of this year, with Ní Chofaigh’s character attempting to relaunch her career with the new position of Commissioner of Culture.

Sports fans are catered for with the return of popular shows such as ‘Seo Spóirt’ and ‘GAA Beo’, which will be broadcast in HD for the first time this September, retaining TG4’s status as the station which broadcasts the most Irish sport.

Acknowledging the station’s future financial difficulties, O’Domhnaill thanked the BAI and the Irish Language Broadcast Fund for their support, admitting the new projects would not have been possible without them.

Young people’s television is also back with a strong lineup of Irish talent, including music journalist Úna Mullally who will present the fourth series of ‘Ceol ar an Imeall’, Máire Treasa Ní Dhubhghaill and Colmán Mac Séalaigh who present ‘Ponc’, and a number of Irish-language animations, including ‘Mr Men’ and ‘Team Umizoomi’. O’Domhnaill said TG4’s range of kid’s TV was the “most important programming.”

TG4’s popular Scannán segment is back, with international hits such as the Bill Murray and Scarlett Johansson-starring ‘Lost in Translation’ and ‘The Good Girl’ starring Jennifer Aniston and Jake Gyllenhaal. US TV shows such as ‘Breaking Bad’ and ‘True Blood’ are also back, again making their Irish premieres on TG4.

With new Irish-language interactive games and apps developed by the broadcaster, as well as a bespoke new logo, TG4’s new season kicks off Thursday September 6 with a new series of ‘Ros na Rún’ at 8.30pm.

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