C4 axes T4 brand after 14 years
Channel 4 is dropping the T4 brand after 14 years as it begins the search for a Friday night music show to refresh its youth programming.
The brand, produced by Shine’s Princess Productions, will come to an end in December. It initially launched on Sundays and was later expanded to both Saturdays and Sundays on C4.
But the brand was moved onto E4 only after the launch of magazine show Sunday Brunch – also produced by Princess.
Talent such as Demot O’Leary, Vernon Kay, Simon Amstell, Alexa Chung, Rick Edwards and Nick Grimshaw have all done stints on T4, often in the early part of their careers.
Head of formats Dominic Bird is now looking for three music shows to pilot in the new year, which will be scheduled for Friday nights in 2013.
The decision reflects the decline of the T4 audience as a result of E4, which has become the broadcaster’s main brand for the 16-34 audience.
Bird will work with C4 music commissioner Jonathan Rothery, who recently joined from Sky, and commissioning executive Steven Edwards to brief producers on the music tender.
“This is an incredibly exciting opportunity to develop a credible popular music show for Friday nights and the pilots reflect our continued ambition to provide our younger audiences on Channel 4 with a range of entertaining music content”, Bird said.
“Whilst T4 has historically been a much loved destination for our young audiences, its popularity has been incrementally diminished over time by the digital revolution. In a landscape where Channel 4 now provides E4, the nation’s most popular channel for 16 -34 year olds, T4 has been fighting incredibly hard maintain the cut through it once enjoyed and now is the right time to look at more appropriate ways to serve our younger viewers.”