Emily Maitlis delivers MacTaggart Lecture at Edinburgh TV Festival 2022

Veteran interviewer Emily Maitlis will deliver this year’s James MacTaggart Memorial Lecture at the Edinburgh TV Festival in Scotland.

As a senior member of the BBC’s news team, she has covered elections for over a decade, interviewed Prime Ministers and numerous celebrities, hosted the evening news program Newsnight and hosted the podcast Americast.

In her talk, she will “address the complex world of modern journalism, in which the dangers of breaking news and holding global power to account go hand in hand not only with intimidation and overt censorship, but in a more nuanced way with language and the normalization of the Extraordinary,” according to the festival.

MacTaggert’s past keynote speakers have included actress and writer Michaela Coel, writer Armando Iannucci, media mogul Rupert Murdoch, and writer Jack Thorne.

Maitlis is perhaps best known for her interview with Prince Andrew, which was then labeled “car crash” TV, due to the royal’s chilling reactions to his relationships with convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein and sex trafficker Ghislaine Maxwell. As a result of the interview, Andrew was effectively withdrawn from public life and stripped of his patronage.

Earlier this year, Maitlis announced she was stepping down from the BBC to move to Global, where she will reunite with fellow BBC player Jon Sopel for new, as yet unannounced projects.

She is also believed to be developing a feature film based on her interview with Prince Andrew with Blueprint Pictures.

“The list of extraordinary people who have given this talk before me makes this an incredible honor,” Maitlis said in a statement. “It’s a huge privilege – but also a responsibility to get this right. The need to hold power accountable without fear or favor is more urgent than ever. We are good at documenting the censorship and intimidation of journalists around the world. But we are sometimes too slow to recognize how and when it is happening in more subtle ways, closer to home. In many places, the political actors, their communication style and their relationship to the truth have changed.”

Edinburgh TV Festival Chairwoman Fatima Salaria said: “Emily Maitlis has been delivering the news to our living rooms for over 20 years but could never be called a newsreader. More perceptive and edgy than her last employer was comfortable with, she’s happiest when she’s cracking up on a story, not just reporting it.”

“Fans of not only her encounter with Prince Andrew, but also ‘Newsnight’, ‘Americast’ and her best-selling book ‘Airhead’ will want to hear her interpret truth, power and impartiality in a challenging and insightful MacTaggart.”

The Edinburgh TV Festival takes place from 24th to 26th August.

https://variety.com/2022/tv/news/emily-maitlis-edinburgh-tv-festival-mactaggart-lecture-1235335811/ Emily Maitlis delivers MacTaggart Lecture at Edinburgh TV Festival 2022

Charles Jones

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