María Casado (Barcelona, 40 years old) has dedicated half of her life to journalism. Since 2005 it is one of the most recognizable faces of Spanish Television. After going through different editions of the Newscast, Weekly Report and TVE breakfasts, he currently presents La morning of La 1 for two years. His love for the medium led him to write and publish a book in 2017, Historias de la tele (Aguilar), in which he toured Spanish television history from 1956 until the arrival of private channels. On December 19, he took a further step in his career by taking possession of the presidency of the Academy of Television Sciences and Arts, replacing Manuel Campo Vidal.
Question. What is the work of the Television Academy?
Answer. It is a meeting place for all of us who dedicate ourselves to making television, and not only those of us who put on our faces, but of all the technical aspects. What the Academy wants is to value excellence, good TV and the good work of professionals in this medium.
P. Why did you want to introduce yourself?
R. I am 40 years old, I have been in this profession for half, sharing with many colleagues certain concerns about television that is coming, the love of television, and the time has come to want to do something, to make that meeting place something more open , especially to that television that comes and that part of those professionals that right now are not in the Academy join this project, which is no small task.
P. What is missing from the Academy?
R. The way of making television has changed a lot in recent years, the way of watching it. If a few years ago we were told that we were going to end up sometimes watching television on a mobile phone, we would have died of laughter, but it is true that the Academy was born at a time when we still had a conception of analog television, generalist, which is still there. The TV that comes is much more than all this. Yes, they are the generalists, which obviously are still the backbone of the Academy, but other ways of making television come hitting hard, through new technologies, from platforms. What I would like would be to open dialogue with everyone and in the end feel part of that meeting place and share what our day to day as professionals is like, the challenges we have to face and, above all, think about what We want to do a few years from now.
P. Public television is essential, what relationship does the Academy have with it?
R. It has always been good. With TVE and regional television there has always been a very good deal. In my team I have people from TV3, Canal Sur, Basque television. We also wanted to cover that part of the territory. I work in Spanish Television, I believe in the importance of what is a public radio and television, in the public service and in the importance of those public media precisely to reach and offer another type of television. Surely private televisions have to dedicate themselves to another fragment, but I do believe in the need to have these public televisions in our country.
P. What impact does that public television have today?
R. What I wish, from my heart, is that public radios and televisions in this country cease to be the political toys of each other. In the end it is what has been penalizing the good work of many workers of those public radios and televisions. That in the end a government came and changed everything, another came and changed everything, and that is complicated and not healthy. Hopefully you can get that independence from public radio and television to work.
P. How has television changed in Spain in the last 20 years?
R. The way of doing it and seeing it has changed. Many people no longer sit in front of a sofa at lunch or dinner, but rather you watch TV through a mobile phone or even platforms, and you watch the series or production you want at the time you want . Digitization has made the job much easier. I know of many professionals who make television through the Internet and who go with a mobile phone, a small remote control … the technique has changed a lot and in the end what it does to you above all is to expand the offer, which is always healthy and that competition makes you better.
P. Do you dare to think what it will be like in the next 20 years?
R. With how fast it goes it is difficult to know. It is clear that technological progress, being able to go with a mobile phone and connect at the moment, is no longer that television has changed, it is that in general, technology has managed in recent years to change our lives. I am unable to think what it will be like, because in recent years the great leap that has been made on TV in our country has been really impressive.
P. Will the Academy continue with the debates of the candidates in the government elections?
R. Generally, the public image that has been given of the Academy in recent years has been the role of referee in these debates. We will be there. I would like that in this country we already had the democratic exercise that the political parties knew of the need to carry out these debates without the existence of an arbitrator. The Academy will be. What has prevailed above all in the work of the Academy was that these debates take place. With all the limitations of the world. Then the party negotiations … those criticisms that were made by many people who said that in the end it was very narrow, that was not the fault of the Academy. I would love to have an open debate, with questions, as we can sometimes see on televisions in other countries. But in the end, these negotiations go beyond what the Academy is, which has always had, above all else, the thought of holding those debates. Then the negotiations are those that have been putting obstacles and limits to the format.
P. How does the Academy work with the legacy, with the archives of television history?
R. It is very important to find the balance between the experience of all those who made and invented television in Spain, who are many of the academics who are part of my team and are the human capital on which the new generations who have come to lean heavily. But the Academy must be opened to new generations. There is a very important part to take care of here, which is a file that I discovered when I wrote TV Stories, which is a file called Living Treasures, and it is a file that we are going to treat with great care and continue to grow. , because it is an archive in which the Academy has dedicated itself during all this time to calling precisely all those veteran people to tell about their experience, what TV was like when it arrived in Spain in the year 56. Things that seem incredible. Now everything is digitized, but the tapes arrived in a helicopter at Prado del Rey and launched them from the air.
P. And a Television Museum?
R. When I wrote the book last year and started digging through history and diving through Prado del Rey and seeing what was left in the warehouses of the house, I realized that many people of my generation would love to have a museum on TV, like they have other countries. I’d love to, and I’ll speak to whoever has to speak and I’m sure that’s something that is at the heart of all board members. I know that the Academy for many years has tried, but they are things that cost.
P. What about Mediaset, who does not participate in the Academy?
R. Mediaset has not wanted to participate, but I am very clear that it will be part of the work of this Academy. A television academy is not going to make much sense if a group like Mediaset is not there, which is the most watched generalist network in this country. I will try by all means to speak and to give us a vote of confidence and that they want to be part of the Academy again, that they feel part of it.
P. How important are the Iris Awards?
R. What we are going to continue fighting is that the awards, as happened a few years ago, are televised television awards. That is always in the goal of the Academy. We have to get to work now and there is a desire to have a good gala, in which everyone is there and, above all, in the end you have to have a mirror in which to look and dream. I have always looked with great envy at the Emmy Awards and think that one day we can dedicate ourselves to having a gala like that and making mention of the good TV that is made in this country, which is a lot and value talent.
P. What will be the next chapter of History of TV?
R. The review of the book was from the time television was born in Spain until the private ones arrived and more television channels began to exist, the offer was expanded. There comes a time of healthy competition, of great offers, of platforms. More than the next chapter, an Espasa encyclopedia would have to be written again.