Planet Video: Blacklisted

In 2013, The Dragon Has Two Tongues director Colin Thomas wrote an article for Planet entitled ‘From Blacklist to Oscar Shortlist: Paul Turner, MI5 and the BBC’ on how the career of Hedd Wyn director Paul Turner had been affected by political blacklisting within the BBC, and examined whether blacklisting continues to blight the UK media.

Thomas went on to make this short documentary on the topic with editor Sophia Behraki, Media Production Course Leader at Coleg Ceredigion, and a group of documentary students from the Department of Theatre, Film and Television Studies at Aberystwyth University.

In November 2019, Paul Turner sadly passed away. We present the documentary in tribute to him.

A tribute to Paul Turner

by Colin Thomas

Paul Turner was a fighter, always prepared to battle for what he believed in. Born in Devon, he became a passionate Welshman when he moved to Cardiff, learning to speak Welsh fluently. Although he won a Celtic Film Festival award whilst working as an editor at the BBC, his career there was blighted because he was blacklisted as politically suspect.

The arrival of S4C enabled him at last to spread his wings and fly. He directed many successful films notably Hedd Wyn, the first Welsh language film to be shortlisted for an Academy Award.

Blacklisted © Colin Thomas

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About the author

Colin Thomas is a television producer/director currently completing 'Picturing Our Past/Fframio'r Gorffennol', an enhanced ebook history of Welsh film, with Iola Baines of the Screen and Sound Archive of Wales.

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