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Seminar with John Ellis: How TV used to be made

Welcome to lunch seminar on television technology with professor John Ellis. 

How TV used to be made

Analogue TV was difficult work. Skilled teams used complex technologies which frequently developed problems. Understanding how the TV industry coped with these problems can enlighten not only the history of TV but also the problems that any complex technical operation faces today. The ERC funded ADAPT research project has reconstructed the processes of both filmed and live TV production using vintage technology operated by the crews who used it when it was state of the art.

The project recorded the every move of a 16mm film crew, a live outside broadcast unit, film and video editing, telecine and even the last remaining film laboratory in Britain. The result is a visual archaeology, a series of reconstructions, an oral history... and potentially a new research method using moving image and sound.

About John Elllis

John Ellis is professor of Media Arts at Royal Holloway London University and professor II at Department of Information Science and Media Studies. Ellis has a distinguished career both as an academic and as a leading television producer. He produced around 100 documentaries through the independent company Large Door, and has written a number of standard texts in television and media theory and history.

He has headed several UK and European research projects. Ellis is currently project leader of the ERC ADAPT project on technological adoption and adaptation in broadcast TV.