Channel 4’s drama chief Beth Willis is to leave the broadcaster to join drama indie The Forge, the company behind Ackley Bridge, Collateral, Kiri and National Treasure.

Willis became head of drama at Channel 4 back in 2016 after Piers Wenger departed for the BBC. While at Channel 4 she has commissioned shows including The End of the F**king World as well as The Forge’s Ackley Bridge and Kiri.

Prior to joining Channel 4 she was an Executive Producer at the BBC and at Kudos executive producing Doctor Who and the BAFTA winning Eric and Ernie and producing Ashes to Ashes. She started her career as a script editor at Granada.

Willis said, “The last six years at Channel 4 have truly been a privilege – I will miss the people and culture enormously – it’s a very special place. But when George Faber asked me to join The Forge – the chance to work with a group of people whose attitude, instincts and achievements are pretty awe inspiring – it was an offer I couldn’t refuse.”

The Forge’s Founder and Managing Director George Faber, said, “Beth’s track record speaks for itself. Working with both new and established writers, she’s rapidly built a formidable reputation for commissioning outstanding, high-quality drama. I’m thrilled she’s chosen to join us.”

Ian Katz, Director of Programmes, Channel 4, added, “Beth Willis has been an inspirational Head of Drama, shaping the channel’s diverse and award-winning slate with impeccable taste and an unerring eye for how to tell a compelling story. In particular she has been a relentless champion for new writers and ideas that other broadcasters would never make – just what Channel 4 drama should be. We look forward to working with her in the next phase of her career.”

Jon Creamer

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