The TV Festival has today revealed the event dates and first sessions of the 2020 line-up as well as an overview of how this year’s digital Festival will look. In addition, a free, pre-Festival digital session has been scheduled for 16 June, with Rita Daniels and Danny Horan from Channel 4, and executive producer Lucy Pilkington from Milk and Honey Productions, to discuss the upcoming films from black British filmmakers that promise to explore racial issues within society that have been given new urgency by the death of George Floyd.

This year’s Edinburgh TV Festival will take place 24-27 August in a digital format, and with the build-up to the event gathering pace, the first sessions of this year’s line-up have been announced.

At a time when the TV community is facing enormous challenges, the Festival will look at how the industry rebuilds itself, and what kind of industry we want it to be. There will be a full timetable of sessions over four days, taking in the most pressing issues and exploring them with the customary insight, analysis, humour, irreverence and forensic dissection that have become a signature of TV’s foremost industry event.

BBC One’s acclaimed Windrush drama SITTING IN LIMBO, will be the subject of a session exploring how Stephen S. Thompson, a new-to-TV writer, took his brother Anthony’s lived experience of the ongoing Windrush controversy to the TV screen. Stephen will be joined by director, Stella Corradi and lead actor, Patrick Robinson, to discuss the impact the drama has had – especially when broadcast at such a pivotal moment of social change – and what it tells us about bringing black British stories to TV.

Festival Masterclasses will include NORMAL PEOPLE – BBC Three’s hit drama, with stars Daisy Edgar-Jones and Paul Mescal in conversation with their Oscar nominated director Lenny Abrahamson, exec producer Ed Guiney from Element Pictures and Rose Garnett, director of BBC Films about the show that became a hit under lockdown.

In an exclusive, interactive session, award-winning artist, writer and broadcaster, Grayson Perry, will encourage delegates to create works of art. Having received rave reviews for bringing the nation together to make art under lockdown, Grayson will be joined by Philippa Perry to bring the Swan Films produced and All3Media-distributed show for Channel 4, GRAYSON’S ART CLUB, to the Edinburgh TV Festival in an ‘Edinburgh Does…’ special. Introduced by Sunetra Sarker, Art Club will reflect on the role of art on TV, the importance of culture in a crisis, and appraise the artistic efforts of submissions from delegates brave enough to take on the challenge.

 Further speakers and sessions will be announced in the next few weeks but the Festival’s packed schedule will include all the key, flagship moments that have become integral to the industry’s calendar, including The MacTaggart Lecture, Controller Sessions, Masterclasses, interviews, panel discussions and more as well as the TV Foundation’s talent schemes; The Network, Ones to Watch and TV PhD.

Delegates will also still be able to discuss the burning issues, hold networking meetings and partake in speed-pitching sessions with commissioners.

Festival passes can be purchased through and will include access to all events at the Festival and the pre-festival digital weeklies programme. As previously announced, all events and activities for this year’s Festival will be free to freelancers who are being particularly affected by the Covid-19 crisis.