Ghostwatch is a British 90-minute reality–horror/mockumentary television movie, first broadcast on BBC1 on 31 October (Halloween), 1992. Despite having been recorded weeks in advance, the narrative was presented as 'live' television. The original broadcast received a huge audience and resulted in an estimated 30,000 calls to the BBC switchboard in a single hour. It caused so much controversy that it led the BBC to place a decade-long ban on the programme ever being repeated after its initial broadcast. Although this has now been lifted, it remains unlikely that it will ever be shown again on British television.
As yet, Ghostwatch has only ever been repeated on television outside the UK – on stations such as the Canadian digital channel SCREAM for Halloween 2004, and the Belgian channel Canvas in 2008. In 2002, the British Film Institute released a 10th Anniversary edition on VHS and DVD. In 2011, 101 Films released Ghostwatch on DVD in the UK. Here's the synopsis:
The BBC gives over a whole evening to an 'investigation into the supernatural'. Four respected presenters and a camera crew attempt to discover the truth behind 'The most haunted house in Britain', expecting a light-hearted scare or two and probably the uncovering of a hoax. They think they are in control of the situation. They think they are safe. The viewers settle down and decide to watch 'for a laugh'. Ninety minutes later the BBC, and the country, was changed, and the consequences are still felt today.
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