“Survey says it is 6pm, time for the start of Family Feud” was the intro at the start of primetime on TEN last night. But it wasn’t a regular Sunday.
Denyer told his Sunday night audience and the contestants that this was the last episode of this season, indicating that at some time, the game show could return to the TEN schedule. It was 22 minutes of questions and answers without the ads, with the final show, for now, attracting 213,000 viewers. At the end of the show there was no big farewell, just Denyer addressing the camera and saying: “Thank you watching for four years [with hand of heart]. It has been amazing.”
Taking over the 6pm slot from tonight is the new game show Pointless.
Co-hosted by comedian and writer, Mark Humphries, and Dr Andrew Rochford, Pointless sees three teams compete each night in a quiz show unlike any other.
Faced with questions from a wide range of general knowledge topics including sport, music, celebrities and science, players must produce the least obvious answers in order to progress towards the nightly jackpot.
The launch of Pointless marks TEN’s charge into the second half of 2018.
As MasterChef enters Finals Week, the MasterChef Grand Final is scheduled for early next week to be followed by the launch of Australian Survivor 2018 at 7.30pm on Wednesday August 1.
TEN revealed on the weekend that fitness specialist Steve Willis, better known to Australian television audiences as Commando, will face his biggest challenge when he becomes a castaway on Australian Survivor: Champions Versus Contenders.
Viewers first came to know Steve as a fitness trainer on TEN’s family entertainment show The Biggest Loser. Now the shoe is firmly on the other foot as Steve’s body and mind are pushed to their absolute limits in the tropical climes of Savusavu.
Joining the tribe of Champions, the former special forces officer will have to have to call on his years of experience in the army and as a trainer in order to outwit, outplay and outlast the 23 other competitors.
On joining Survivor, Steve said: “Survivor is the ultimate. It’s physical, it’s mental and it’s hard because you have to play dirty to win. I’m going to play as honest a game as I can but I know that it won’t be an easy win but it’s one that I want to win.”
Steve joins other champions Brian Lake, Damien Thomlinson, Moana Hope, Mat Rogers, Shane Gould and Samuel Hilton with more to be announced.
Another crucial part of TEN’s second-half schedule is the long-awaited return of All Aussie Adventures, the third season of the series featuring outback legend Russell Coight. It’s a show that first debuted on TEN back in 2001.
Coight said: “Can you believe that it is over 10 years since I was last on TV (unless you count news footage of me leaving court)? So strap yourself in for another sun-drenched series of outback adventures – All Aussie style.”
Network Ten’s executive general manager revenue – client & partnerships Rod Prosser said: “We’re excited to be bringing Australians this fantastic lineup every Sunday night. It’s funny, family-friendly and light-hearted. The return of All Aussie Adventures I’m sure will bring nostalgia for older audiences and enjoyment for new audiences.”
In an Australian television first, Network Ten will bring the unique and innovative concept of Pilot Week to Australian television audiences from Sunday August 19 on TEN and WIN Network.
Pilot Week will premiere eight original pilots of domestically produced television programs, across a number of different genres, broadcast in primetime across one week.
The programs Skit Happens, Dave, Kinne Tonight, Drunk History, Taboo, Trial By Kyle, Disgrace! and Bring Back… Saturday Night are the programs that will premiere during Pilot Week with the channel hoping some of them will find a permanent home in the schedule.
Viewers will be encouraged to participate and share their feedback via tenplay and social media.
Audience reaction, social buzz and ratings will help decide what shows will return to Australian television screens in 2019.
Beverley McGarvey (pictured top), chief content officer Network Ten, said: “We are excited to be broadcasting such a fantastic array of unique and entertaining programs under the banner of Pilot Week.
“Involving Australian audiences in whether or not a program gets the green light via tenplay and other social initiatives provides a fantastic opportunity for Australian audiences to have their say in what they want to see on our screens in 2019.
“Pilot Week for us, represents a substantial investment in unique and local production, and further cements Network Ten’s role as the innovator of Australian commercial television,” she said.
Network Ten’s executive general manager, revenue & client partnerships Rod Prosser said: “We are the first commercial broadcaster to be doing anything like this. Pilot Week is an exciting initiative that propels Ten’s position as an innovator. With Pilot Week, we are actively taking audiences beyond broadcast, creating a path for them to continue their engagement with the programs across our digital and social channels.
“It continues our commitment to offering creative, multiplatform and innovative opportunities for advertisers and brands, and makes up part of our strongest schedule of programming over the coming months. It is a fantastic way for us to be supporting the local industry on and off screen.”
Network Ten’s TV Week Gold Logie Winner Grant Denyer and Studio 10 co-host Angela Bishop will be on hand to introduce the audience to each pilot as it premieres across the week.
TEN’s pilot week lineup:
Nothing is safe from a Skit Happens parody, when the nations up-and-coming comedians join forces for Network Ten’s first sketch comedy in 12 years. Skit Happens is produced by CJZ.
Funny-man Dave O’Neil opens the doors to his crazy life in a half-hour narrative comedy. Expect laughter, tears and the appreciation of not being Dave. Dave is produced by Studio Bento.
Comedian Troy Kinne ditches the stress of modern life, bringing hard-working Australians a fast-paced half-hour of laughter. Kinne Tonight is produced by Kinne Productions and Big Yellow Taxi Productions.
Rhys Darby and Stephen Curry pour themselves a drink in the international hit comedy format that takes Australia’s rich, and often surprising, history and re-tells it through the words of our most loved comedians and entertainers. Drunk History is produced by Eureka Productions.
Taboo has broken audience records in its country of origin, Belgium. The premise is as confronting as it is simple. The very funny Harley Breen spends five days and nights with members of a disadvantaged group in society and uses the experience to perform a stand-up routine about them – with the subjects sitting in the front row. Taboo is produced by Lune Media.
The toughest cases, biggest celebrities and genuine disputes can only be settled by one man, radio shock jock Kyle Sandilands. As Kyle carefully unravels each case, former The Bachelor Australia star and criminal lawyer Anna Heinrich is on hand to assist in forensically analysing the evidence. Trial By Kyle is produced by Screentime Australia.
The world is full of disgrace and outrage. Shunned politician Sam Dastyari and the team behind Gruen and The Chaser manage the latest outbreak of outrage in a half-hour of opinion, insight and laughs. Disgrace! is produced by CJZ.
Rove McManus is on a mission to bring back Saturday night entertainment.
A chance to reflect on what Saturday night means to Australia – then and now. Young performers will bring back the best of the past and performers of the past are challenged with reinvention. Sketches, guests, music and nothing but feel good moments as Rove finds the comedy and laughs by breaking down the conventions of entertainment and variety television. Join his quest to reunite Australia’s greatest acts, bands, and television faces in a generation-bending live television show. Bring Back… Saturday Night is produced by Roving Enterprises.
SBS’s The Feed host Laura Murphy-Oates scored a hat trick this month when she won three awards at The Walkley Foundation’s Mid-Year Awards.
By Kruti Joshi
Her wins included the prestigious title of 2018 Young Journalist of the Year.
Five years ago, she never would have imagined winning an award for her journalism, let alone getting the Young Journalist of the Year title.
“I am not going to lie – it’s a big deal,” Murphy-Oates told Mediaweek. “Four or five years ago I was a cadet, completely out of my depth and navigating through the newsroom for the first time.”
Murphy-Oates was given an indigenous cadetship by SBS in 2013. “It really shows that you can bring in people from lots of different backgrounds who don’t know that they can belong in an Australian newsroom,” she said.
Foxtel, Sky UK, Screen Australia and Lingo Pictures have announced production of a landmark new drama series Upright, starring musician, comedian, actor and writer Tim Minchin.
The team behind Upright includes the creator Chris Taylor, best known as a member of The Chaser team. Taylor and Minchin are writing the eight-part series alongside award-winning writer-actors Kate Mulvany (Fighting Season, Jasper Jones stage play) and Leon Ford (Offspring, No Activity).
The director is Matthew Saville (Please Like Me). Minchin will also write the music and is executive producer with Penny Win and Helen Bowden. Producers are Lingo Pictures’ Jason Stephens, Chris Taylor and Melissa Kelly (Hounds of Love).
The series will be made in association with the South Australian Film Corporation. Screenwest and Create NSW are also investors.
Upright tells the story of two misfits, thrown together by chance in the middle of the Australian desert, who forge the unlikeliest of bonds in their quest to get a precious piano from one side of the country to the other.
Lucky Flynn (Minchin) hasn’t spoken to his family in years. He’s broke, distant and damaged. He’s also a gifted pianist, whose talent for music is matched only by his talent for self-destruction. When he learns that his mother has only days left to live, Lucky sets off in a hire car to drive the 4,000 kilometres from Sydney to Perth to say goodbye to her, taking with him his only cherished possession in the world – a battered and scarred upright piano. But what should have been a straightforward drive across the Nullarbor soon becomes a test of Lucky’s emotional fitness, when he (quite literally) runs into Meg (Milly Alcock), a hilarious, tough-as-nails teenager, who we soon discover has plenty of scars and secrets of her own.
Production will begin in South Australia and Western Australia in October.
Foxtel’s head of drama Penny Win said: “As part of Foxtel’s commitment to telling great Australian stories, we are delighted to be able to bring this wonderful adventure to the screen. We look forward to working with Tim Minchin and Lingo Pictures on what will be a wonderful showcase of Aussie talent.”
Screen Australia’s Head of Production Sally Caplan said: “Foxtel has proven its commitment to the production of premium Australian drama with Wentworth, The Kettering Incident and most recently the iconic Picnic at Hanging Rock, which has had fantastic success locally and with international sales.
Tim Minchin said: “From the moment I heard about the idea for Upright, I knew it was the show I’d been waiting to make. I like stories that make me laugh and think and cry, I adore the landscapes of outback Australia, and I love music, and homecomings, and characters full of flaws. It’s awesome to be writing with this extraordinary team, and I’m looking forward to acting alongside Milly Alcock, who I think is a really special talent.”
Jason Stephens, Lingo Pictures, said: “There are not many shows I’ve enjoyed developing as much as Upright. It’s been a joy having Tim back home and working with our talented team of writers scripting this beautiful and funny show. Matt Saville’s direction always delivers something special so I can’t wait to start shooting and bringing this story to the Foxtel and Sky audiences.”
Lingo Pictures is currently producing Lambs of God for Foxtel, starring Ann Dowd (The Handmaid’s Tale), Essie Davis (Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries, Game of Thrones) Sam Reid (Prime Suspect 1973) and Jessica Barden (The End of the F*****g World).
Top photo: Tim Minchin (credit: Lev Radin / Shutterstock)
Original Australian content will be distributed across PodcastOne’s global app and website following an agreement between the company’s operations in America and locally (which is a partnership with SCA).
The content will also be available on Apple Podcasts, Google Home and Amazon Alexa.
This will provide Australian podcasts access to the world’s largest podcast market from both a listening and commercialisation point of view.
The alignment with PodcastOne US will allow American listeners to easily access popular Australian podcasts including Hamish & Andy, Mark Howard’s The Howie Games and The Moment, Mark Pesce’s award-winning The Next Billion Seconds, Rosie Waterland’s My Mum Says My Memoir Is a Lie, Tiff Hall and Cass Dunn’s Crappy to Happy, Christian Hull’s Complete Drivel, Mark Bouris’s The Mentor, Dr Nikki Goldstein’s Sex ’n’ Life, as well as Adam Shand’s Adam Shand At Large, The Trials of the Vampire and UnderState: Lucille Butterworth. PodcastOne is also the home of Mediaweek Australia’s podcasts.
“Looking at PodcastOne Australia’s total downloads, Australian podcasts make up 95% of listening,” said PodcastOne Australia head Grant Tothill. “We’ve built a premium lineup of domestic titles and PodcastOne has seen the calibre and success of our Aussie podcasts. Now, they will have them front and centre for the American audience as well.”
In June this year, the Australian PwC Futures study into media revealed podcast listening in Australia continues to grow, with an increasing appetite for original domestic podcasts. This was reinforced in a recent research by SCA insights that showed 87% of Australian podcast listeners have listened to an original podcast in the past month.
PodcastOne chairman and CEO Norman Pattiz said, “We have worked closely with PodcastOne Australia over the past 18 months to expand our premium global brand, while incorporating localised content for the Australian market. It has proven successful. Plus, we now have some additional great content to add to our worldwide distribution channels.”
See podcastone.com.au to find the full catalogue of PodcastOne’s Australian and US content.
For the eighth consecutive year, Nine News Sydney has claimed an early ratings victory in the competitive television news battle.
At the end of the 21st week of the 40-week official ratings calendar, Nine News Sydney has won all 21 weeks on an average weekly audience measurement, putting it in an unbeatable position to claim the ratings crown.
The year-to-date average audience figures are as follows:
Nine News Sydney’s news anchor Peter Overton said he is humbled by the result in this his tenth year behind the 6pm news desk.
“We have a team of hard-working and outstanding reporters, producers, editors and camera teams who strive each day to bring viewers fair and accurate reports on issues across our state, the nation and the world. This result is a true testament to their efforts,” he said.
“Personally, to be at the helm of Sydney’s flagship bulletin for a decade is a great privilege and I thank the viewers who continue to trust and rely on Nine News to keep them up to date and informed.”
Nine News Sydney director Simon Hobbs said: “The professionalism, dedication and hard work of our entire team is second to none. Every day we remain committed to bringing our loyal viewers more stories and news, without bias, to ensure Nine News remains Sydney’s most trusted source.”
Top photo: Cameron Williams, Peter Overton, Amber Sherlock
The second season of Nine’s True Story with Hamish & Andy will premiere on the network on August 7 at 8:40pm.
The first series was a ratings hit. Each episode attracted an average audience of nearly two million viewers (including encore screenings and streaming on 9Now).
In each half-hour episode, comedic duo Hamish Blake and Andy Lee meet one regular Australian storyteller who recounts their amazing, surprising and/or funny true story, which is simultaneously recreated by a cast of Australia’s most renowned performers.
An all-star lineup of actors has been assembled for series two including Essie Davis, John Waters, Dan Wyllie, Bruce Spence, Rob Carlton, Rob Sitch, Mark Mitchell, Jane Allsop, Stephen Hall, Dave Lawson, Anne Edmonds, Katrina Milosevic, Georgia Love, Sam Pang, Susie Youssef, Debra Lawrance, Richard Davies, Brian Mannix, Shareena Clanton, Kate Jenkinson, Jessica Tovey, Ian Meadows, Denise Scott, Michala Banas, Toby Truslove, Santo Cilauro, Nicholas Bell, Dilruk Jayasinha, Kate McCartney, Luke McGregor, Mandy McElhinney, Dave Hughes, Christie Whelan-Browne and Genevieve Morris.
In the first episode of the second season of True Story with Hamish and Andy, Australia will meet Carol, who is visually impaired. Her mother has always told her that she can do anything. In 1986, when Carol was 15, she was given an English assignment that required her to write out and analyse 40 poems. However, she hadn’t even started the assignment on the night before it was due. With reading not being her strong suit, Carol decided that her only way out was to fake an illness and miss the next day of school. What viewers will learn in this true story is that once Carol is committed to something, there is no going back – even if what she has committed to is entirely fictitious.
True Story with Hamish and Andy, made with the assistance of Film Victoria, is created and produced by Tim Bartley, Hamish Blake, Andy Lee and Ryan Shelton. The latter three also serve as writers and producers on the show. Bartley, Lee and Shelton are also directors on the show, along with Colin Cairnes (100 Bloody Acres, Scare Campaign, Fancy Boy). The producer of True Story is Andrew Walker (Rosehaven, The Kettering Incident). The executive producers on the series are Greg Sitch (The Dressmaker, Back in Very Small Business), Bartley, Lee and Blake.
SBS Sport and Twitter are joining forces to bring FA Cup winners Chelsea FC’s only 2018 Asia-Pacific appearance against Perth Glory, live and free for all Australians and Twitter users around the world (excluding UK).
SBS will live stream the Glory v Chelsea game on Twitter for the first time. The coverage will kick off at 9pm AEST/7pm WST on July 23 at @TheWorldGame. The live stream will be simulcast across SBS, The World Game website, The World Game app and on SBS On Demand.
SBS’s football experts Lucy Zelić and Craig Foster alongside Premier League great Michael Bridges will host the coverage. Commentary will come from acclaimed football journalist David Basheer and former Perth Glory and Socceroo defender Chris Coyne.
The one-off Australian exclusive match is the first football game to be played at the new multipurpose Optus Stadium in Perth. It is also Tony Popovic’s first game as Glory Coach.
SBS director of sport Ken Shipp said: “This international stream on Twitter is a fantastic opportunity for football fans around the world to see one of our local sides go head-to-head with one of the most established clubs in Europe, with SBS’s signature commentary and analysis from a distinctly Australian perspective.”
The live stream comes off the back of #WorldGameLIVE, an exclusive content partnership between SBS and Twitter for the World Cup that included a daily highlights show. The digital program had a total of 1.5 million views across 23 shows throughout the tournament.
Twitter Australia sales director Angus Keene said: “Twitter users love their sport and, after the success of 2018 FIFA World Cup and #WorldGameLIVE on Twitter, we can’t wait to share this hotly anticipated match with football fans across the globe.”
“Our partnership with SBS is something we’re proud to extend to the Chelsea and Perth Glory game. We enjoyed an incredibly successful content partnership with SBS during the 2018 FIFA World Cup, and are excited to continue this partnership by live streaming this match for viewers in Australia and around the world.”
The live coverage of Perth Glory v Chelsea FC game will begin at 9pm AEST on July 23 on SBS and The World Game on Twitter and online.
• Singles: Any Shark’s I Said Hi returns to top 10, Ariana Grande too
• Albums: Love Monster scares off Drake from top spot + Adam Brand top 10
By James Manning
5 Seconds Of Summer just couldn’t hold on for one more week to equal the Aussie chart record for weeks at #1. Their Youngblood single slips to #2 on the chart after 14 weeks.
Taking over top sport is Drake with In My Feelings, which rises to the top on its third week on the chart and up from #3 last week. It is the Canadian rapper’s fourth #1 single here, three of them coming in 2018.
New to the top 10, and one of four top 50 chart debuts this week, is Ariana Grande with the track God Is A Woman from her next album Sweetener. The diminutive pop star met with a planeload of Nova listeners to New York late last week where she hosted a listening session for her new material.
Returning to the top 10 after 14 weeks on the chart is Amy Shark with I Said Hi, which had a previous chart peak of #6.
The other chart debuts this week:
#31: Childish Gambino with Summertime Magic
#32: Benny Blanco, Halsey and Khalid with Eastside
#48: Hilltop Hoods featuring Adrian Eagle with Clark Griswold
It’s hard to think of a more deserving #1 ARIA recipient than the unassuming Amy Shark as she works hard to promote her first album. She has had a big couple of weeks that have included a State Of Origin performance, a prestigious slot at Splendour in the Grass on the weekend and this week she becomes the second act to feature in an MTV Unplugged episode. Then next week she is on the bill at Lollapalooza in Chicago! Her album Love Monster is one of four new releases to debut top 50 and she unseats Drake’s Scorpion from the top after a fortnight at #1.
ARIA notes Love Monster is the seventh Australian #1 on the ARIA albums chart in 2018 after 5 Seconds Of Summer’s Youngblood, Sheppard’s Watching The Sky, Parkway Drive’s Reverence, Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunupingu’s Djarimirri (Child Of The Rainbow), Kylie Minogue’s Golden and Vance Joy’s Nation Of Two.
Other new arrivals this week:
#4: Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again Soundtrack. The film music from the new movie hits the charts exactly 10 years to the week since the original Mama Mia! soundtrack was #1 on the chart.
#6: Adam Brand with Milestones…20 Years – a double-album compilation celebrating two decades in the music business.
#18: The Babe Rainbow with Double Rainbow. Second album from the Byron Bay psych rockers.
In this week’s Australian games chart, Crash Bandicoot: N. Sane Trilogy retains its number one spot for the third week in a row, but it has some serious competition.
By Cam Shea, editor-in-chief, IGN
Nintendo Switch exclusive Octopath Traveler has debuted at number two. This comes as no surprise to anyone plugged into gaming right now, as Octopath Traveler is very much the game everyone is talking about (Fortnite aside), a loving, modernised homage to classic Super Nintendo-era Japanese role-playing games that packs dozens upon dozens of hours of gameplay. Niche by its very nature, the game’s instant success even took its own publisher Square Enix unawares, and shows – as does Crash – the power of nostalgia in the games industry. You can check out IGN’s rave review here.
Will Octopath Traveler overtake Crash Bandicoot next week? Or will the fact that Crash is both truly mainstream and available on multiple platforms keep him on top? Digging into the platform-specific numbers, Crash only actually comes in at number one on Xbox One, with the game at number eight on the PS4 charts and number four on Switch, making its overall aggregate number one look a little less secure.
Back to the overall top games, and at number three is another new title: Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker, a delightful puzzle-platformer that has been updated since its Wii U release to include four levels based on Super Mario Odyssey. It’s also exclusive to Nintendo platforms and reviewed well.
Elsewhere, the charts tread similar territory to last week, with a handful of games from the last few months and a handful of truly enduring classics. Now that the World Cup is over, FIFA 18 has dropped out of the Australian Top 10 altogether, although it’s still on top in New Zealand.
Finally, as always, it’s worth pointing out that this chart only indicates what’s going on in retail and doesn’t factor in digital sales, so it’s only a partial view of the video game sales landscape. A platform like PC, for instance, is driven by digital sales, and this is reflected in the PC retail top 10, for which seven of the top ten entries listed are The Sims 4 and its expansions. Granted, those are all available at low price points, but it’s still a reflection of the fact that PC gamers purchase games through Steam and other digital platforms at a much higher rate than console gamers do. You can see the platform breakdowns on IGEA’s site.
• Ninja Warrior wins 7.30pm shoot-out all people and 25-54
• Seven wins Sunday primary and combined: News + House Rules
• Ben’s ribs a winner with MasterChef Finals Week under way
By James Manning
House Rules started with a very moving back story about the special renovation under way this week. You know that when Johanna Griggs sheds a tear it’s for a good reason (and she wasn’t reading a copy of Woman’s Day). The episode did 928,000 which was up on the previous Sunday’s 876,000.
Sunday Night then did 599,000 after 620,000 a week ago.
Australian Ninja Warrior was into the finals. While the show ranked #1 all people and 25-54, the audience of 939,000 was down a little on last week’s 966,000.
60 Minutes followed with 602,000 after 677,000 a week ago.
The final episode of Family Feud as it goes into hibernation did 213,000.
The Sunday Project then started on 249,000 and climbed to 374,000 after 7pm. The hosts of Pointless, Mark Humphries and Andrew Rochford, were guests on the episode, while Tommy Little and Hamish Macdonald were on location in the bush.
The first episode of Finals Week saw Ben perform best in the first challenge with Khan then winning the second challenge. The remaining three of the top five now head to what promises to be a nasty pressure test tonight. The audience was 854,000, up exactly 100,000 on last week.
The second week of Sports Tonight did 157,000 after launching with 128,000 a week ago.
Grand Designs New Zealand was on 516,000 followed by Jack Irish with 684,000.
Stage 15 already of the Tour de France with 186,000 watching.
Earlier in the night First Civilisations did 183,000.
|ABC ME||0.4%||7mate||4.6%||GEM||1.7%||ELEVEN||2.1%||Food Net||0.8%|
|ABC ME||0.4%||7mate||5.3%||GEM||4.5%||ELEVEN||2.9%||Food Net||1.5%|
|ABC ME||0.5%||7mate||4.9%||GEM||3.3%||ELEVEN||2.4%||Food Net||0.6%|
|ABC||Seven Affiliates||Nine Affiliates||Ten Affiliates||SBS|
|ABC ME||1.0%||7mate||5.4%||GEM||5.2%||ELEVEN||1.4%||Food Net||0.8%|
|SUNDAY METRO ALL TV|
Friday Top 10
Saturday Top 10
Shares all people, 6pm-midnight, Overnight (Live and AsLive), Audience numbers FTA metro, Sub TV national
Source: OzTAM and Regional TAM 2018. The Data may not be reproduced, published or communicated (electronically or in hard copy) without the prior written consent of OzTAM
Many colourful tales had been written about media legend Sam Chisholm in recent days, and most of them were probably true, his daughter Caroline Jumpertz told mourners at his funeral on Friday, reports The AFR’s Neil Chenoweth.
“You can apply almost any adjective you like about Sam and it probably works,” she said in an emotional tribute that described a difficult but strong relationship with her father.
“He was a complicated, tenacious, charismatic man, who loved his family and truly appreciated his friends and who profoundly valued every single day of his life right to the end,” she said.
He died July 9, aged 78.
Channel Nine identities and former executives including Brian Henderson, Ian Leslie, Geoff Harvey, Peter Meakin, Brian Walsh, John Westacott and Chisholm’s successor running Nine, David Leckie, were among more than 200 people who packed St Swithun’s Pymble to see off the man who made them stars.
The Australian’s Caroline Overington also reported on Sam Chisholm’s funeral:
[It] was perhaps a little short on star wattage: there was no Jana, no Ray, indeed none of the big stars from way back when Sam was at Nine.
Yes, Kamahl was there, arriving in a Rolls that he took at least once around the block, as was the newsreader who first took Nine to No. 1, Brian Henderson, now using a cane.
But otherwise, perhaps appropriately, it was all suits: Nick Falloon, formerly of Nine, now chairman of Fairfax was there, as was John Hartigan, formerly of News; plus you had David Leckie and Peter Meakin, and Seven’s Bruce McWilliam.
Australia’s free-to-air and pay television broadcasters have tapped advisory firm IBB Consulting to help find a technology vendor to build a centralised briefing portal, reports The AFR’s Max Mason.
Nine Entertainment, Seven West Media, Network Ten, Foxtel and Multi-Channel Network have come together, via industry body ThinkTV, to create a new briefing portal that plugs in all their various trading platforms to allow advertisers and agencies to brief the broadcasters on a campaign in a single location.
The portal will provide a single dashboard for advertisers and agencies to brief across television and eliminate the need to repeatedly brief each broadcaster.
The project is seen as the opening gambit by Australia broadcasters to make it easier for advertisers to buy TV advertising and could lead to greater collaboration. The portal is not a centralised ad trading platform and each network will still operate its own system.
ABC chairman Justin Milne plans to ask the federal government for tens of millions of dollars for one-off capital expenditure to convert the ABC into a digital-only media service that Australians will watch via the internet after the television signal is switched off, reports The Australian’s Stephen Brook.
The process, which will take decades, would be in addition to the $1.1 billion a year the ABC now receives.
A central aspect of the broader transformation for the ABC is “Project Jetstream”, a plan to build a giant digital database to house all ABC content. The device, which will operate like a giant iview, will ultimately save the government millions of dollars in efficiency by avoiding duplication, by cutting millions spent annually on broadcasting infrastructure and by allowing the government to sell off broadcasting spectrum for billions.
“To build the ABC of the future we will essentially use a bunch of different technologies,” Milne, who is also a board member of the NBN, told The Australian.
The president of Viacom’s Paramount Television unit has been fired for inappropriate remarks, reports The Wall Street Journal.
Amy Powell, who ran the unit for five years, was let go because of comments “inconsistent with our company’s values”, said Paramount Pictures chairman and chief executive Jim Gianopulos in a memo to the studio.
The firing came after an investigation by Paramount’s human resources and legal team this week after complaints were made about Powell’s conduct, according to the memo. “It is imperative that we uphold our values and ensure that all employees feel safe and included in the workplace,” Gianopulos said.
While the memo doesn’t disclose what Powell said, a person familiar with the matter said the remarks in question were “racial in nature”. Specifically she made remarks on a conference call about black women being angry and about black children being raised by a single parent.
Powell said she couldn’t comment and hung up when reached by The Wall Street Journal.
Gerald Stone, 84, one of the great pioneers of current affairs TV in Australia, is worried about the future of 60 Minutes, which he first brought to Australian audiences four decades ago. He says he simply never knows what time it is on air because of continual schedule changes, reports The Australian’s Nick Tabakoff.
“I don’t stay up and watch it much,” he says. “It’s on too late. The scheduling is affecting my viewing of the show at my age. I watch Netflix and other streaming platforms, and shows that I can know they’re going to be on when I want to watch.
“No one is going to watch a show where they don’t know what time they’re going to watch it.”
While not contradicting Stone, the show’s current executive producer, Kirsty Thomson, puts a brave face on its constantly changing screening time. She notes that the program’s direct competitor at Seven, Sunday Night, is in the same boat as 60 Minutes, in having to work around so-called “shiny floor” shows like My Kitchen Rules, The Voice and Ninja Warrior.
Nine’s director of news and current affairs, Darren Wick, acknowledges that “when we have a consistent starting time, we do better”.
Nine’s renovation juggernaut The Block just keeps getting bigger, with the show understood to have paid more than $11 million for its next location, the former Oslo Hotel in St Kilda, reports News Corp’s Fiona Byrne.
According to sources, Micjoy, a Nine company closely associated with The Block, paid $11.8 million for the rundown backpacker accommodation in Grey St this month.
Micjoy is the company used by The Block previously to purchase the Regent St site in Elsternwick for $9.4 million that was the basis for the 2017 series, and the Gatwick Hotel in St Kilda for $10 million – the location for this year’s eagerly anticipated series.
The Oslo sale price is believed to be the highest price paid for a Block location and positions the 2019 series as the biggest yet in the show’s history.
Over 11 weeks, and with a budget of $220,000, the new Blockheads will totally transform five luxury apartment spaces in the notorious Gatwick building located in beachside St Kilda in Melbourne.
They’re all competing for the chance to walk away with $100,000 prize money and any profit made when their apartments go under the hammer at a live public auction later this year.
Block host Scott Cam will be joined again by his co-host Shelley Craft, along with judges Neale Whitaker, Shaynna Blaze and Darren Palmer, “The Blockinator”, foreman Keith Schleiger, and his right-hand man, Dan Reilly.
In July 2018, The Block proved its popularity with Australian viewers by winning its sixth TV Week Logie Award for Best Reality Program. The Block has distributed an astronomical cash total of $18,895,501 to contestants since premiering on Channel Nine in 2003.
Shonda Rhimes achieved almost everything a television producer could hope for during her long run at the US network ABC, reports The New York Times.
She made herself into not only one of the most prolific writer-producers in the business, but also a mogul, as the founder and head of the Shondaland production company. ABC filled its entire Thursday night lineup with shows created or produced by her – a body of work that includes Grey’s Anatomy, Scandal and How to Get Away With Murder – but Rhimes was restless.
Now, after signing a multiyear, nine-figure deal with Netflix, Rhimes will try to match or top her network success in the wide-open expanse of streaming, free of timeslots, commercial interruptions, and restrictions on language and content.
Last August, Netflix and Rhimes had an agreement for a contract with a base salary of around US$150 million, with incentives that could kick the producer’s earnings much higher, according to two people with knowledge of the deal.
Rhimes has eight series in the works at Netflix, ranging from period dramas to a documentary.
Millions of TV viewers are unable to watch UKTV channels including Dave and Gold after Virgin Media’s removal of the network from set-top boxes on Sunday morning following a business dispute, reports The Guardian.
After months of talks between the firms failed to solve an impasse over fees, 10 channels, including five that are free-to-air, disappeared from subscribers’ televisions at midnight.
Free-to-air channels Dave, Drama, Home, Really and Yesterday, along with paid-for channels Gold, Alibi, Eden, Good Food and W were replaced on Sunday morning.
Virgin Media has accused the broadcaster of seeking “inflated sums” to provide its paid channels and linking those to provision of free channels such as Dave and Home.
South Australian Film Corporation (SAFC) has launched a new initiative that promotes an inclusive approach to skills development for content makers with a disability.
Full Tilt is the first initiative launched under the Delivering Diversity umbrella of programs announced by the SAFC in April. It joins the Gender Agenda and the Aboriginal Screen Strategy, delivering practitioner and content programs for a multiplicity of voices underrepresented in the screen industry.
Courtney Gibson, CEO of the South Australian Film Corporation, said: “Delivering Diversity is all about removing barriers to careers in the screen sector for a wide range of under-represented voices. SAFC is committed to working with industry to deliver positive change and enrich our working environments, to grow the industry and audiences alike.”
Full Tilt will be informed by internationally renowned leader in disability arts, Gaelle Mellis, in the newly created role of SAFC disability strategy executive. Mellis has served as creative director of Access2Arts SA, and as vice chair of Arts Access Australia.
Mellis said “For too long our stories have been told by others and non-disabled actors continue to win awards for ‘cripping up’. This has to stop. We want to tell our own stories and see ourselves represented authentically. Disability is a normal part of life. Disabled people can shed light on different aspects of the lived human experience with our stories adding to the richness and diversity of our cultural landscape.”
The Full Tilt attachment program opens opportunities for filmmakers with disability to undertake paid attachment positions in SAFC-supported productions.
The Seven series Wanted starring Rebecca Gibney, with the current block directed by Jocelyn Moorhouse, is the first production to employ a Full Tilt attachment. South Australian emerging cinematographer Paul Vagnarelli, who is profoundly deaf, is working as a Full Tilt attachment to multi-award winning cinematographer Mark Wareham (Mystery Road, Cleverman, Secret City).
Vagnarelli is a graduate of Adelaide College of the Arts, Adelaide City TAFE, with an Advanced Diploma in Screen and Media and has worked as a gaffer’s assistant (Lighting Department) on a number of local film productions. Wanted is his first experience on set of a major television production.
Wanted producer Tom Hoffie said, “If Paul’s significant contribution to the set of Wanted is any indication, then the Full Tilt initiative is sure to be an important driver to greater inclusion and diversity in our industry. We congratulate the SAFC for the initiative and would encourage upcoming productions to support Full Tilt.”
Along with the Full Tilt initiative, the SAFC has partnered with SBS to launch a short documentary initiative of the same name. It will fund three standalone short screen works created by South Australian filmmakers with disability to premiere on SBS’s streaming platform, SBS On Demand, in 2019.
This initiative will prioritise diverse filmmakers, with two out of the three key creatives in each team (based on a team of writer, director, producer) coming from underrepresented communities and at least one member of the key creative team being a filmmaker who is deaf or with a disability. If there are only two key creatives, one member of the key creative team must be a filmmaker who is deaf or with a disability. Development funding and a development workshop will be provided for up to five shortlisted teams.
The SAFC and SBS will then co-fund three teams to go into production.
Submissions close August 13.
Top photo: Wanted’s Tom Hoffie, Rebecca Gibney, Paul Vagnarelli and Mark Wareham