ITV’s Parachute Regiment Docuseries to Air in 2019


The Paras: Men of War (working title), a new three-part ITV docuseries on the Parachute Regiment, is slated to premiere on the network next year.

Commissioned by ITV, producers Avanti Media were granted access to film the elite Parachute Regiment over the course of 12 months. During this time, they were able to capture raw recruits in their late teens throughout the demanding training process to become elite soldiers and earn acceptance into the regiment.

The Paras: Men of War was commissioned for ITV by Tom Giles, controller of current affairs. Neil Grant, executive producer, and Nick Betts, senior producer and director, produced for Avanti Media.

Giles said: “At a moment when the armed forces are under more scrutiny than ever, this new series presents a unique opportunity to see inside the world of the Parachute Regiment, which is usually firmly closed to outsiders, and get a powerful understanding of the people and culture within an elite, sometimes controversial, regiment that we all know of, but about which we have little real inside knowledge.”

“This is no ordinary and predictable army-access documentary,” added Grant. “This is raw, honest and revealing—sugar coated it isn’t. Uniquely, this series goes inside the ‘Para’ mindset of what it takes to succeed, and the personal consequences of failing to make the grade. It’s an intimate portrait of loyalty and honor, of the kill or be killed mindset and being a member of the Regiment entitled to wear the coveted maroon beret.”

Betts commented: “The Paras are trained killers who’ve courted secrecy, controversy and admiration in equal measure, and who largely view all ‘media’ with extreme caution. The dialogue with the Regiment involved a long period of just listening, without filming—but then slowly the real men behind their identities as soldiers emerged. The ambition of the series was to show the raw, often brutal truth of why young men from all backgrounds desire to become paratroopers. And in order to do this they must strip away the person they are, to become capable of killing.”