BBC Three factual exec lands new post

BBC Three documentaries executive Sam Bickley has landed a post at Samantha Anstiss’s production division within the BBC’s television operation.

Sam_BickleyBickley (pictured), who led BBC Three in the interim after Zai Bennett left for Sky Atlantic last year, will become a creative director at the unit, which is billed as an in-house BBC ‘label’ within BBC Productions.

Antiss launched the unit last year with a remit to develop shows that don’t fit the traditional BBC programming genres and structures. This is part of a strategy to allow small teams to break free from regular administrative and management duties to encourage programme-making.

Bickley is formerly head of commissioning for documentary and features at youth-skewing BBC Three, which is set to find out if the BBC Trust will agree to close it as a cost-cutting measure. At Three she was behind Barely Legal Drivers and Don’t Drop the Baby.

This post closed in January upon a restructuring of the BBC’s doc and factual unit as on of four that were replaced by three posts with a different focus.

Her post was eventually filled by Boundless managing director Patrick Holland, who was named head of commissioning, documentaries last month.

“TV is all about finding that partner you value having creative conversations with every day,” said Bickley. “Sam [Anstiss] and I have complementary skills and this feels like a really exciting way to be a part of BBC Production.”

“It’s been a creatively rich year, collaborating with talent across the BBC, and now Sam [Bickley] and I want to broaden our programme range and ambition. Not only do we share a name but also an appetite for pushing at genre boundaries,” added Antiss.