Documentary

Coming soon…

Five’s art expert Tim Marlow presents this fascinating documentary providing a new insight into the work that the hugely popular painter Canaletto created while living in London. Made in conjunction with Dulwich Picture Gallery’s ‘Canaletto in England’ exhibition, it tells of how the Venetian painter Giovanni Antonio Canal came to London in 1746 to make his fortune.

The English capital was the ‘shock city’ of Europe, rich from the spoils of war, slavery and England’s burgeoning empire. Canaletto had met many of his clients in Venice, which was a stopover for the Grand Tourists from England. “They went there to practise their poor language skills and for the services of the most luxurious prostitutes in Europe,” says art critic Brian Sewell.

Tate Britain’s Martin Myrone explains that Canaletto’s ambitious sweeping views of London were depictions of what London wanted to become. While British artists like Hogarth showed the filth and squalor of street life, Canaletto’s vision showed a city poised to become the most powerful place on Earth.

In 1755 Canaletto returned to Venice, where he died a virtual pauper. His agent and friend Consul Joseph Smith lived to a grand old age, having sold his entire collection – including 50 Canalettos – to King George III for the equivalent of £2.5m. These paintings are still in the Queen’s collection.

Business journalist Jeff Randall investigates the state of British pensions in a new documentary for ITV1 – Where’s My Pension Gone?

In this revealing one hour programme Randall explores how hundreds of billions of pounds have vanished from employee pension schemes.

In the ‘fat cat’ years of the eighties and nineties company pensions were brimming with cash and those who retired were rewarded with a healthy pension. But now funds are billions of pounds in the red and many people face a future of hardship as they head into old age.

Where’s My Pension Gone? tries to find out exactly why our pensions have disappeared and how this has been allowed to happen.

The programme is the definitive story of how Britain’s once prosperous pension scheme fell into what the critics describe as a crisis and what the consequences are for us all.

Jeff Randall is a business columnist for the Daily Telegraph and was the BBC’s former business editor.

NEW on ITV1 Network Thursday 25 January 9:00 PM to 10:00 PM

Monty Python’s seminal comedy Life of Brian, made in 1979, remains one of the most controversial films ever produced.

This hour-long documentary examines how the movie caused a global furore amongst religious groups. The Pythons reflect on the concept and making of the film and discuss the obstacles they had to overcome.

EMI withdrew funding, local councils in Britain banned cinemas from showing the film and Mary Whitehouse lobbied the BBFC to refuse the film a certificate.

A screening of the film follows, and What the Pythons Did Next airs later tonight.

Monday 1 January 2007 on Channel 4.

The True Stories Strand, which showcases the best of both international and domestic feature documentaries, returns tonight with Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room.

Alex Gibney’s Oscar-nominated documentary traces the rise and fall off one of America’s biggest ever corporations, Enron.

The company began in 1985 when Ken Lay gambled on the deregulation of the energy industry and set up Enron, becoming CEO. In 2001, Ken Skilling joined him at the top and in the mid-90s boom, Enron were on everyone’s lips as a success story, with investors flocking to buy their shares.

But the whole company was based on the same principles as the infamous South Sea Bubble and with hubris comes downfall. When journalist Bethany McLean wrote an article in Fortune magazine questioning the company’s accounts, despite initial derision, her suspicions proved true and in December 2001, the company filed for bankruptcy. Both Lay and Skilling were sentenced to lengthy prison terms (although Lay died of a heart attack before his appeal could be heard).

Wednesday 3 January 2007 on M4

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