Sunday 25 March 2018

Young Trump devotees star as BBC Three eyes America

Angela Scanlon meets young supporters of Donald Trump in one of three new BBC Three shows
Angela Scanlon meets young supporters of Donald Trump in one of three new BBC Three shows

A new programme that looks into the lives of the passionate young supporters of US presidential candidate Donald Trump is set to air on BBC Three, along with two other landmark shows focusing on America.

Trump's Youngest Superfans will see presenter Angela Scanlon visit youngsters who form a darker side of the divisive Republican candidate's fandom.

She will also explore what motivates these unlikely fans - including supporters from the LGBT and African American communities - to put so much effort into backing him amid claims of his "racist" and "sexist" attitude.

BBC Three's controller Damian Kavanagh is expected to announce this and other new commissions for the channel during his address at the Edinburgh TV Festival.

A release ahead of his speech quoted him as saying: "The US election will define the US and its relationship with the world for a generation, and Donald Trump is at the centre. We wanted Angela to see what his supporters had to say first-hand and why he resonates with them so much."

The programme was commissioned by Mr Kavanagh along with two other American-focused efforts, due to the increasing interest young Britons have in the US.

He said: "We know young people in the UK are fascinated with the US and there is a lot to say about the US in 2016. Trump v Clinton will define a generation, Obama's legacy and Black Lives Matter will have an impact over here in the UK. It's important young people in Britain get a perspective on what is happening in the US, and why."

Reggie Yates: Life And Death In Chicago follows the award-winning documentary maker as he travels to investigate gun crime in the US city, where the murder rate has risen by 72% in 2016 and with shootings up more than 88%.

Yates said: "With the realities of black-on-black violence and police brutality an unfortunate reality for Chicago, this I feel is a film that tells a story we're aware of from the perspective of the people."

The third programme, a six-part documentary series, will give British youngsters an insight into what life is like for African American teenagers in the US.

American High School has been filmed over the course of a year and focuses on a school principal and his students, through their all-important senior prom and graduation.

In February this year, BBC Three made history as it became the world's first TV channel to make the move online in a bid to address the changing way young people consume media.

Mr Kavanagh said BBC Three is "reinventing" the BBC's offering of programming for young people by "giving them the content they want, on the device they choose, when they want it".

"It's not rocket science but it will take time. Reinventing BBC Three is a marathon not a sprint but the early signs are very encouraging."

Press Association

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