Belfast Telegraph

Jerry Springer to talk politics and media at Edinburgh TV Festival

He follows in the footsteps of Jeremy Corbyn, Ant and Dec and Charlie Brooker at the annual event.

Jerry Springer to talk politics and the media at Edinburgh TV Festival (Zak Hussein/PA)
Jerry Springer to talk politics and the media at Edinburgh TV Festival (Zak Hussein/PA)

Jerry Springer will deliver the Alternative MacTaggart lecture at this year’s Edinburgh TV Festival.

The American broadcaster and former politician will also take part in a Q&A session in which he will discuss his career hosting The Jerry Springer Show, as well as his views on the relationship between politics and the media.

Springer said of Edinburgh: “Clearly one of the most beautiful cities in the world – it’s an honour to be asked to speak, usually I’m being asked to be quiet!”

The Q&A session will be hosted by Dorothy Byrne, the head of news and current affairs at Channel 4, on Friday August 23.

Springer, 75, is best known globally for hosting his tabloid talk show The Jerry Springer Show, which ran from 1991 until 2018 in the US.

His series inspired the UK’s The Jeremy Kyle Show, which was axed earlier this year following the death of a participant.

Prior to Springer’s broadcasting career, which included roles as a political reporter and commentator, he was the mayor of Cincinnati and was a political campaign adviser to Robert F Kennedy.

At the festival, he will share his views on politicians’ relationship with the media and how traditional news organisations can uphold democratic debate in an era of fake news.

Edinburgh TV Festival’s advisory chairwoman Kelly Webb-Lamb said: “As the king of the tabloid talk show, who better to hear from right now? And with Dorothy Byrne by his side, it’s definitely box office. The popcorn is already in the microwave.”

Executive chairman Graham Stuart added that Springer is “the legendary Godfather of tabloid television”.

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Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn delivered the Alternative MacTaggart in 2018 (Jacob King/PA)

He said: “Could there be a more relevant time for him to bare his soul at Edinburgh?”

TV hosts Ant and Dec, Black Mirror creator Charlie Brooker, Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn have all previously delivered the Alternative MacTaggart lecture.

The main James MacTaggart Memorial Lecture is the keynote speech of the festival and addresses the future of the television industry.

It has not yet been announced who will deliver this year’s MacTaggart lecture, although it has previously been given by Michaela Coel, Rupert Murdoch, Armando Iannucci and Jon Snow.

The Edinburgh TV Festival runs from August 21-23.

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