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Top media people 2016: Julian Cress & David Barbour

Our annual listing of 25 media executives who made a difference this year and are shaping how 2017 will look

Barbour (L) with Scott Cam, Cress and Sturzaker

Julian Cress & David Barbour, Cavalier TV, Creators and EPs The Block

The production partners had a crazy busy 2015 with two seasons of The Block (Triple Threat and Blocktagon) plus the then-new Reno Rumble. The network was concerned the format was being overworked and commissioned just one Block for 2016 and another Reno Rumble. The ratings were poor for the latter, but were so good for The Block that it helped turn around Nine’s poor performance in the first half. The Block’s 2016 success had several contributing factors – Cress and Barbour (along with Nine’s EP Justin Sturzaker), just one series meant pent-up demand by the time it finally started and another brilliant property purchase (a Port Melbourne art deco office building) that delivered real challenges (and later real profits) for the contestants. Cress works on site during production while Barbour runs post-production back in Sydney.

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