The Word on the Street

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The Independent Culture
AN EDINBURGH Television Festival Session on honesty in documentaries started to cut up rough for The Guardian when some of the audience started to attack its media editor, who was chairing the session. They were unhappy about his paper's exposure of Carlton's allegedly faked documentary The Connection. The backlash will not end there. It is rumoured that Clark Productions, which made the Hard News series, is investigating The Guardian story. A documentary more sympathetic to the paper is being made by another production company and there are tales of antagonism between the two investigative teams. Proof, if it were needed, that the media is ready to disappear up its own behind at the drop of a hat.


COMPETITION TO be the most famous person at the festival was unusually stiff this year, with one Edward Windsor appearing close to Ms Louise Woodward on the delegate list. Mr Windsor, of Ardent Productions, had to collect his delegate tickets just like everyone else and dutifully hand them in. However, his bodyguard just gave the ticket collectors a hard stare before going wherever he wanted, and Ardent's travel people did not have to battle to get a last-minute hotel booking. He apparently stayed at Holyrood Palace. Less happy with his accommodation was the media correspondent of The Express. Rather than stay in a hotel he was given the Express flat, which had been used by arts writers; it looked like one of the junkies' flats in Trainspotting. There were no sheets, no towels, no toilet paper and no hot water. Beer cans were piled high. Once, under Beaverbrook, it was a point of honour for Express correspondents to travel in greater style than rivals, staying at the best hotels in every city in the world. What a difference 3 million copies a day makes.


ELISABETH MURDOCH'S address to the festival was so emphatically delivered that most discussion afterwards was about who her drama coach is. But she wasn't the only one with an image consultant working hard for her. Louise Woodward arrived at a sponsor's party holding hands with the young daughter of her lawyer, Barry Scheck. It made a most touching image.