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Producer Eteri Levieva spoke about bloggers, Ivan Urgant and a birthday at an inconvenient time

For three decades of her work on television, Eteri Levieva has studied the kitchen of the industry inside and out. In the nineties, she worked as the director of programs for the TV company VID, VID Networks, then she led the TV company Sovershenno Sekretno, and since 2011 she has been the head of the Academy of Russian Television, which also holds the TEFI ceremony in Moscow and the regions. It is possible that Eteri Mikhailovna could write luxurious behind-the-scenes memoirs, but now her future inspires her much more than the past. On the twelfth of January, Eteri Levieva celebrates her anniversary. “MK” came to the birthday girl with congratulations and questions.

– A birthday right after the New Year holidays probably has its own characteristics. It’s not easy to cheer people up after an already long fun. Do you have your own rituals for the holiday?

“I have always suffered because of the date of my birthday. Back in school, I had no luck with this mark. Someone else didn’t return from the holidays, someone was sick, in general, it was not easy to gather friends, and I even got used to it. But I don’t like to postpone the holiday, so most often we just celebrate it in the family circle. True, this time my television colleagues expressed a desire to come and congratulate. I don’t think it’s necessary to entertain my guests in any particular way. Everyone will be very happy to see each other. Still, I have a lot to do with television. TV companies “VID” and “Sovershenno sekretno”, now the Academy of Russian Television… It’s always a pleasure to bring old colleagues together.

— At the beginning of the year, many make plans for the next twelve months. Planning now is not easy, but a producer with your solid experience, probably, cannot but look ahead. What views do you have?

– I think that now is the time for everyone to unite, because we, television journalists, in general, have nothing to share, and prepare for the TEFI award with renewed vigor. So the mood is very combative.

– You probably notice that now the importance of premiums, to put it mildly, is not growing. If the project is successful, then it doesn’t need trophies, and if it’s not successful, then TEFI is unlikely to save it …

– I agree, in the perception of various awards, a lot is outdated, and there are a lot of dogmas in the awards themselves, which, let’s say, do not contribute to their authority. But we want to change a lot. On the other hand, among young people who are just starting to take their first steps in the industry, releasing programs on the Internet, the recognition of the professional community, oddly enough, is very important. Ratings and views are one thing, but even for young bloggers who are somehow connected with journalism, the opinion of colleagues is important.

– That tiktoker who does not want to be on a federal channel is bad …

“That surprises me too. Danya Milokhin is skating in the Ice Age, and Ida Galich is leading the Russian Ninja program … It would seem, why do they need this? But, apparently, there is a feeling that the country sees and knows you, because a large part of this country is still television viewers.

– But this does not cancel the persistent discussion on the topic “do I need a TV at home”. In your opinion, has big television been more pleasing or upsetting lately?

– In my opinion, all the predictions of the death of television are still premature. It will worry us for a long time. Of course, television can upset, but it is developing in the same way as the whole country. Much of what is happening in the country is visible on the screen. Regarding the need for a TV at home, I can say that new gadgets do not cancel the production of TV content. The Urgant show, documentary or entertainment programs can be watched both on the tablet and on the phone screen. In any case, people watch what the TV professionals have produced.

– You started working on TV in the early nineties at the VID television company. In those days, very little time passed from an idea to its television premiere. Now it is much more difficult to launch a new project on a big channel. Maybe those who say that TV is now too over-produced are right?

– Most likely, they are right. In general, I have always been a supporter of live broadcasts and programs that were made from wheels – the so-called Life to tape. They have the breath of life. Of course, there are economic issues, but it is very important for television when it is alive, when everyone has the same emotions, as during sports competitions, congratulations from the president on the New Year or the finale of the Voice show live. As for the nineties, for me and many of my colleagues this is the best time. Then the archives were opened and there was no ban on information, so I personally do not accept the definition of “dashing nineties”. It was a very concentrated time when people who had not had enough training went on the air and learned quickly. My teacher Andrei Razbash worked as a video engineer, but became a wonderful producer. And now there are bright personalities. Konstantin Ernst, Anton Zlatopolsky, Nikolai Kartoziya, Timur Weinstein are all strong producers who have turned television around, launched new TV formats and raised the quality of modern series.

– What programs do you like as a viewer?

– I like some of the work on regional television, where interesting young people appear. Such as Alexander Smol, who at one time worked on Krasnoyarsk television and was remembered for the fact that he began to applaud on the air after the news about the increase in salaries in the local Duma. So he expressed his attitude to what was happening and earned instant love from the audience. Now he hosts a very nice program “Saw Video” on Channel One. I like documentaries by Yuri Dud and Irina Shikhman. I like the way Ksenia Sobchak works. There are some interesting serials, the Seventh Symphony sunk into my soul, I liked Vertinsky. Here humorous programs basically leave much to be desired. Vanya Urgant is leading here for me. He is very sympathetic to me with relevance and respect for his audience.

– Probably, any producer at the beginning of the new year should be an optimist. What keeps you optimistic?

— I am admired by enthusiasts of their work, especially those working in the regions. There are still many caring and professional people there. I like it very much. And, of course, my optimism is supported by my daughter, who also works on television. When I see how sincerely and wholeheartedly she does her job, it seems to me that everything will be fine.

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Source From: MK

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