Channel 4 have announced an amazing Paralympic broadcasting package that’ll have viewers glued to the action for the whole Games fortnight.
Channel 4 has ambitious plans for its coverage of the Games, including a multi-location studio format and an all-star presenting team. Not only that but they’ll be broadcasting over 300 hours via their Paralympic Breakfast Show and morning sports competition programming.
If that’s not enough, Channel 4 has secured multi-platform broadcast rights within the UK and for the first time will have an unparalleled 16 live streams on its Paralympics microsite, showing over 1,000 hours of sport – more than ever before.
A highlights show will transmit to UK audiences from Tokyo, before returning to the Leeds studio for an early evening show celebrating ParalympicsGB medals of the day, followed by The Last Leg, which will be broadcast to audiences daily from London. Live overnight sport then follows again from Japan.
In a first for the channel, More 4 will be a dedicated team sports channel live from Tokyo which will see matches featuring ParalympicsGB teams in wheelchair rugby and wheelchair basketball.
Television is such a powerful cultural driver and over the years since Channel 4 took on their Paralympics coverage it’s fair to say that their dedication has done much to shift perceptions of disabled people as both athletes and presenter talent. Once again, the broadcaster is breaking new ground with 70% of their presentation team being disabled people, smashing their own ‘Paralympic record’ from Rio 2016.
Channel 4 has also designed its coverage of the Tokyo Games to be the most inclusive and accessible to date.
Channel 4 and More 4 will carry live subtitles and the Opening Ceremony will have live signing and live enhanced open audio description/commentary simulcast on 4Seven. The majority of content on the Paralympics Microsite will also have subtitles.
If you can’t wait until the Games, don’t worry, parasport themed programming starts soon with a season of shows including, Jonnie’s Blade Camp, Billy Monger Changing Gear, Sophie’s Great Escape and an exclusive series with Olympic athlete, Michael Johnson, meeting ParalympicsGB athletes, to give you an early fix.
People talk about the impact or legacy of the Paralympics – but that can only happen if it’s presented with confidence, compassion and pride. Through their committed programming, Channel 4 have already changed the perceptions of disability and it looks like there’s much more to come.
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