Paul Jackson was ITV’s director of entertainment and comedy in 2007, when he commissioned the original TV series of Benidorm. Before that, he had been Granada’s chief executive officer in both Australia and the USA.
He went to Australia from the BBC, where he held the role of controller of entertainment, responsible for five entertainment departments working in television, radio and online. He was also managing director of Carlton Television when it launched in 1993.
Starting in TV as a programme maker, he produced The Two Ronnies, The Generation Game, Top of the Pops and Blankety Blank, then went on to originate cult sci-fi sitcom Red Dwarf (International EMMY winner), Three of a Kind (BAFTA and Golden Rose of Montreux winner), The Young Ones (BAFTA winner), Girls on Top for Central, and Saturday Live for Channel 4. He also co-produced an Oscar-winning success in 1988, The Appointments of Dennis Jennings, which starred American comedian Steven Wright and Rowan Atkinson.
From 1994 to 1996, Jackson was chairman of the Royal Television Society. He was founder chairman of Comic Relief, which has raised over £1 billion to date. He broadcasts regularly on Radio 4 with his series In Conversation With…, Britain in a Box and The Real Comedy Controllers.