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Talking the language of TV celebrities

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When we settle down to watch television, we might never think of what goes on behind the camera lens. It’s the reason why you’re probably not aware there’s an exciting and growing demand for language service providers to provide a range of services for media production companies.

According our latest annual market survey , the global expansion of Netflix into 130 countries in 2016 could have seen Netflix’s volume of translations increase by 300%.

One ATC member – Chelmsford-based Bedford Translations – has been supporting British TV celebrities, including Gordon Ramsey and Ant and Dec, by providing translation services for ITV for many years.

Bedford Translations became involved with Ant and Dec in early 2017 when they were asked to translate consent forms for people who were about to appear in the popular ITV programme, ‘Saturday Night Takeway’.

Regular viewers of the show will be familiar with the ‘Sofa Watch’ feature where a sofa is placed in a secret location and by the end of the programme people have to find the sofa and go to the spot where it is situated.

To celebrate the RBS Six Nations 2017, ‘Sofa Watch’ went international and sofas started appearing in Paris and Rome. For members of the public to consent to appear on TV, the forms needed to be in their native language so they could understand and sign them.

This was where Bedford Translations, which was founded in 1983 and has been part of TTC wetranslate Ltd since 2016, came in to translate the important legal documents.

The latest TV programme to use the services of Bedford Translations was the two-part documentary ‘Gordon Ramsay on Cocaine’, which was screened on ITV in October.
The celebrity chef lost his friend, fellow chef David Dempsey, when he fell to his death in 2003 after taking cocaine. The programme showed Gordon investigating the source of the drug and how it’s produced.
As much of the action took place in Colombia, South America, all of the legal documents had to be translated into Spanish – specifically Colombian Spanish. Bedford Translations had to complete this before filming started to ensure that everything was signed off and permissions granted.

Levent Yildizgoren, Managing Director of Bedford Translations, said: “Although not a word of our translations appears on screen, the accurate translation of documents is essential for these programmes to be aired. Maybe a small cog in a much bigger wheel, but one without which the wheel wouldn’t turn.”


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