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Channel 5 plots more Royal programming

Channel 5 director of programming Ben Frow reveals plans for more themed shows around the Royal family, including a big event piece about Anne Boleyn.

Channel 5 will continue with its popular Royal-themed programming and has commissioned a new "event" piece centred around Anne Boleyn, channel head Ben Frow has revealed.

Documentaries and dramatisations about the Royal family - present and historical - form the lynchpin of Channel 5's Saturday night schedule, with recent subjects including Princess Diana, George V and Princess Anne.

Speaking at the Edinburgh TV Festival, Frow outlined the channel's general strategy with historical programming and revealed more details about the upcoming Boleyn project.

"One of the things we've done really successfully and I'm really proud of is our big history slate," he said. "We've obviously had a lot of Royals and we used to do some one-off things which sank without trace. So we started thinking, how do you turn history into event television? If it's live and it feels like it's live it's much more compelling.

"So we started to do three-day stripped events. We did the Great Fire of London, we did the Battle of Britain recently and we've got the Dambusters coming up.

"Anne Boleyn is my absolute favourite person in history. We've done [a programme on] Henry and Anne's relationship, we've done Anne as one of the six wives and we've got a new three-parter coming up which will be stripped over three nights which looks at her arrest, the fall and trial and execution. We're [also] going to do a drama on Anne Boleyn next year.

"The viewers love the royals. I never thought the Royals would become one of our biggest successes. Princess Anne is our biggest, most successful Royal, and Meghan and Harry have given us a lot of ratings as well."

This Saturday's documentary, Edward & Sophie: The Reluctant Royals?, profiles the Queen's youngest son and his wife.

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