The BBC has been hit with huge backlash after announcing plans for a new drama about Jimmy Savile.
The corporation confirmed it has commissioned mini-series The Reckoning that will tell the story of how the presenter, who was exposed as one of the UK’s most prolific sex offenders and paedophiles, rose to fame, and how the horrifying sexual abuse scandal – which had been kept under wraps throughout his life – unfolded after his death.
Since the announcement, many people have been left outraged by the BBC’s decision and branded the move ‘vulgar’ and ‘disgusting’.
‘The survivors of this vile man don’t need a permanent reminder of the trauma they endured… there’s ABSOLUTELY no “sensitivity or respect” for these people,’ wrote one on social media.
Echoing a similar sentiment, another penned: ‘There’s something quite sinister about the BBC trying to score ratings over a child abuse scandal that they covered up for decades.’
Meanwhile, a third added: ‘The #BBC should not make a drama about #JimmySavile and his perverted sexual ways. Some of his victims are still alive, it might drive them to suicide, reliving their memories.’
On why the BBC wanted to tell the story, executive producer Jeff Pope explained: ‘We must understand why a man like Jimmy Savile seemed to remain immune for so long to proper scrutiny and criminal investigation.’
TV bosses stressed they are working closely with many people whose lives were impacted by Savile, assuring their stories will be told with both sensitivity and respect.
Controller of the BBC drama Pete Wenger said: ‘The story of Jimmy Savile is one of the most emotive and troubling of our times. We do not intend to sensationalise these crimes but to give voice to his victims.
‘We will work with survivors to ensure their stories are told with sensitivity and respect and to examine the institutions which Jimmy Savile was associated with and the circumstances in which these crimes took place.’
‘Drama has the ability to tackle sensitive real-life subjects and consider the impact of a crime on its survivors and what lessons can be learnt to stop this ever happening again,’ he continued.
Savile was knighted in 1990.
A year after his death in 2011, reports surfaced that he had sexually abused hundreds of people throughout his life.
The Metropolitan Police stated that the total number of alleged victims was 589, of whom 450 alleged abuse by Savile.
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