80. Angela Jain

With hit shows such as Skins, The Inbetweeners and Misfits, the E4 chief is on a roll – but she needs to replace Big Brother
Angela Jain
Angela Jain
Angela Jain
Wed 14 Jul 2010 02.42 EDT

Job: head of E4
Age: 41
Industry: broadcasting
Annual programme budget: £55m
2009 ranking: 96

Angela Jain's E4 refreshes the viewers that other broadcasters cannot easily reach – the teen and twentysomething generation.

Hit E4 shows have included the teen soap Skins, which returned for a fourth series this year; the sitcom The Inbetweeners, which Jain has commissioned for a third run; and its latest breakthrough show, the asbo superhero comedy, Misfits.

"E4 is a channel that chiefly churns out vacuous pap for the young and empty-headed," said the Daily Telegraph. There can be no greater praise.

Both Misfits and The Inbetweeners won prizes at this year's Bafta TV awards, to go with the Bafta that Skins won last year. "Just look at the Baftas," said one member of our panel. "It's been a great year for Angela Jain and E4."

Jain, who is currently on maternity leave, was previously the commissioning editor responsible for Channel 4's biggest show, Big Brother. But with the reality series coming to an end after its 11th series this summer, Jain is likely to benefit from a bigger budget for comedy and drama on E4.

Just don't expect a slew of documentaries on her channel. "I run an entertainment channel for young people," said Jain.

"Even if those young people have got responsibilities, I want them to leave them at the door when they watch E4. I interpret my public service requirement as breaking through new talent. We give so much new talent their break on and off screen and I'm really proud of that."

Jain's other E4 commissions include PhoneShop, a comedy script edited by a rather more established industry name – Ricky Gervais.

Jain began her career in children's television at the BBC and ITV. Previously a launch commissioning editor of E4, ordering the long-running strand Popworld and the ill-fated reality show Chained, she took over E4 in 2007 after two years at Channel Five, where she was responsible for shows including Pet Plastic Surgery.

As well as waving goodbye to Big Brother, E4 will also say farewell to Friends later this year. It will be no easy challenge to replace it, but leaves plenty more room for Jain to make her mark.