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BRICKING IT How do you make LEGO building into must-watch TV? Jenny Priestley speaks to Steph Harris, executive producer of Channel 4’s LEGO MASTERS, to find out


veryone loves LEGO. You might have played with it as a kid (or adult), you’ve probably stood on it at some point in your life and you can’t fail to be awed by the amazing creations featured in the likes of The Art of the Brick. At the end of this summer, Channel 4 decided to go one step further, launching new competition series LEGO MASTERS as a four-episode series. The show’s premise was to follow eight teams of two as they took part in challenges to create everything from miniature fairgrounds to creatures that would be used to adorn a tree. Each week Matthew Ashton, vice president of design for the LEGO Group, was on hand to both encourage and judge the final creations. The show reached its climax with two teams going head-to-head to create a build using up

to 500,000 bricks that measured 2x2 metres. So, why did Steph Harris, LEGO MASTERS executive producer, think LEGO building could be turned into TV gold? “There’s both a nostalgia and an instant connection,” she says. “Anyone can do it. It’s about unleashing that creativity in people and the scope of what you can do with LEGO is phenomenal. There’s always an appetite from broadcasters for new competitive formats that celebrate amateur passions as demonstrated to great success in shows like Bake Off and MasterChef. This felt like the only one where you could have all ages from eightto 80-year-olds on an even playing field.” Harris admits getting LEGO to agree to the series wasn’t particularly easy. “As one of the world’s most popular

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Profile for Future PLC

TVBE October 2017  

TVBE October 2017