500 Days Until Whisper and C4’s 2020 Paralympics Coverage


500 days until the start of the 2020 Tokyo Paralympics, when years, months, weeks and hours of training by each athlete will be compressed into one instant. The relentless schedules, the sacrifices, the digging deep, the pushing further, the trying harder, the doing it better… focused down to one moment. An incredible can’t-look, must-look, nerve-defying moment, potentially life-transforming for everyone involved.

Inspiring stories, raw emotion, incredible highs, crushing lows and take-your-breath-away brilliance. Whisper is planning to connect viewers with every incredible moment as it prepares to deliver over 200 hours of Paralympics coverage for C4 at Tokyo’s 2020 Games, starting with the Opening Ceremony on 25 August.

With 500 days to go, how has C4’s Paralympic Production Partner been preparing? Andy Stevenson, Whisper Films Series Producer, explains:

“We have a big countdown clock running in the office, which keeps things very real. 500 days sounds a lot, but it will go incredibly fast. Since finding out we won the contract (in 2018), we have made three separate recce trips out to Japan (with C4 and the Last Leg crew) to look at sporting venues, studio options and hotels for the broadcast team. We will have a large production team onsite for this project, so the logistics require meticulous forward planning.

“From a creative point of view, it’s very much big picture at this stage, so concentrating on the overall look and feel of the broadcasts.Set designs and graphics are already being formulated. We have regular internal creative meetings at Whisper, monthly updates with Channel 4 and are also

working closely with the British Paralympics Association and International Paralympic Committee.

“The presentation teams are being defined and, most importantly, we are already building relationships with the athletes themselves, as they prepare for, perhaps, the biggest event of their career. We covered the Winter Paralympics from Peoyngchang last year (nominated for the RTS Sports Programme of the Year) and we’re excited about delivering the event from Tokyo. I feel incredibly privileged that we will be there to capture all the action as it unfolds throughout the 13 days and to share the transformative power of the Paralympics with Channel 4 viewers.”

Andy who, in his own words, was ‘born without a full complement of limbs’, is part of a diverse Whisper production crew who will be working on the 2020 Tokyo Paralympics. Andy was included in the Shaw Trust 2018 Disability Power List, which revealed the most influential disabled people in the UK.


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