Presenter, Producer and Director
“Entertaining and infuriating in equal measure,” was how in 2007 the Guardian reviewed James Ballardie’s first ever documentary Mischief: Is It Cos I Is Black? for BBC Three. It’s a sentiment he has honed and crafted in to a zen-like philosophy flowing through all his subsequent work. You might have seen it in action more recently in films like BBC Four’s K-Pop Idols: Inside The Hit Factory and Flat Pack Pop: Sweden’s Music Miracle, or in his stints as roving reporter on BBC Two’s annual Glastonbury Festival coverage.
When he’s not on TV, James can often found in a darkened edit suite surrounded by empty fried chicken boxes – hacking apart footage like a bloodthirsty sacrifice to the gods of specialist factual. He’d been pointing TV cameras at other people for well over a decade before someone thought it’d be a good idea to point one at him – developing, producing and directing some of the most obtuse formats that the raw economics of show business will allow. You can witness his deft narratives on films like Hansa Studios: By The Wall 1976-90 for Sky Arts and the upcoming eight-part On The Corner Films series ‘1971′.
Whether opining as a rent-a-gob on C4 News and Richard Bacon’s BBC 5Live Show, pontificating in print for BBC News, Metro and Lonely Planet, vigorously vlogging for Channel 4, or just preaching about pork as host of The Aporkalypse Podcast – what you see of James in the media is a reasonably accurate portrayal of the real James Ballardie but with all the umms and ahhs and awkward silences cut out to imply he is more of an erudite raconteur than is actually the case.
Date: 2019Production (role): K-Pop Idols: Inside The Hit Factory (Presenter)Company: BBC Studios for BBC4
Date: 2018Production (role): Flat Pack Pop: Sweden's Music Miracle (Presenter)Company: BBC Studios for BBC4
Date: 2016- PresentProduction (role): BBC Glastonbury FestivalCompany: BBC Music for BBC2
Date: 2017Production (role): BBC News (Reporter)Company: BBC News for BBC1