Friday February 15, 2019

Ratings for Married indicate why Nine really wanted Australian Open

In a newMediaweek podcast (available here), Nine program director Hamish Turner tells Mediaweek’s James Manning about how the Australian Open tennis has helped power Nine’s Q1 audience.

“We always sat there very, very envious of the Australian Open tennis as a promotional platform and how it works so well just because of the demographic composition.

“That profile lends itself to our broader entertainment programming. We were very happy we were able to chase the tennis and secure it. It has definitely paid dividends from both a performance perspective and a platform for the rest of our shows.

Hamish Turner

Turner recalled for us how the Married At First Sight franchise has grown to the audience magnet it is now:

“It is obviously is a show that started in a very different place. We had three series that followed the more traditional ob doc format, which came from Red Arrow. We took four couples over six to eight episodes, married them, sent them on honeymoons, and then worked out whether they wanted to stay together or not.”

That version of the format built an audience, but it was not a big enough crowd to start Nine’s year as advertisers would have liked up against Seven’s then all-conquering My Kitchen Rules.

“We had a real issue at the beginning of our year. We looked around [at alternatives] and our director of television Michael Healy said, ‘Look, we’ve got Married At First Sight there, is there something we can do with that?’

“The series was originally produced internally and we took it to Endemol Shine Australia to develop and see what they could do.

“They increased the episode numbers and turned it into more your traditional strip show. That included dinner parties and commitment ceremonies.

“It’s been a three year journey with that show. We saw it take a big jump last year and it’s continued on its way this year. It is very noisy and has really captured the national conversation and has continued on a growth trajectory.

Married has now taken over from My Kitchen Rules as the number one show all people. I know I did it that last year, but it has done it much earlier this year.

“From a demographic breakdown, it is just absolutely thumping the competition and delivering some amazing streaming numbers on 9Now.”

Turner noted how the show generates much chatter on socials, fills much airtime on breakfast radio and online, including maybe 20 articles daily at the Mail Online!

Listen to the podcast to be published later today.

That’s Life! claims to be #1 in real life category, monthly selling well

The team behind Pacific’s That’s Life! brand is celebrating following what it is calling the successful launch of its monthly edition which has seen the brand take a 54% share of sales against its main competitor.

By James Manning

The Pacific title goes head-to-head with Bauer’s Take 5. The good news for both publishers is there a big audience still consuming their growing stables of regular titles and special editions.

See also: New monthly – That’s Life! brand continues to thrive 25 years after launch

Linda Smith (pictured), editor of That’s Life!, has updated Mediaweek about the launch following our recent report.

“This is an absolute testament to the power of the That’s Life! brand. We see that share only growing as we head into issue two and beyond.”

Pacific launched the new monthly title in the lead up to the Australia Day long weekend and according to Smith, “sales have exceeded all expectations”.

Our weekly magazine has dominated our rivals and led in copy sales for 25 years. That absolutely still continues today, so I guess we shouldn’t have been surprised that we would lead with the monthly as well,” she said. “We continue to win where it matters to us, and our partners, and are always innovating to ensure that stays the case.”

Louisa Hatfield, general manager for family and entertainment at Pacific, told Mediaweek: “Recently there has been misinformation in-market about the real-life category with some pretty outlandish claims. Some brands are adding together their weekly and monthly readership and claiming that as an overall readership. Obviously, that is a nonsense as it doesn’t allow for any duplication.

“The reality is that there is no comparison between That’s Life! and any other brand.”

See also: How Bauer’s Take 5 keeps its growing audience entertained

Across print, digital, social and audio, That’s Life! now has a footprint of 2.5 million, well ahead of its competitors. On Facebook alone, 870,000 followers engage with content created specifically for the platform.

One of the brand’s recent extensions is the How I Survived podcast, now in its second season, which each fortnight shares a shocking true story of a person who has survived against the odds.

“Our audience is absolutely loving How I Survived. We’ve had around 70,000 downloads, which is easily the best performing in the magazine category,” said Smith. “Like all of our successes, we’re looking at ways to capitalise on this so stay tuned.”

Bauer Media events reveal luxury ‘disruptive initiatives’ for advertisers

Bauer Media this week announced a number of “disruptive initiatives” for 2019, focusing on the luxury industry, millennial consumer habits and a new agenda targeting a better financial female future.

In a longstanding exclusive relationship, Bauer partnered with British forecasting consultancy The Future Laboratory, to present a luxury trend forecast on the global perspective and a unique Australian view. Events in Sydney and Melbourne explored a new era of luxury and a marked shift in the consumer mindset.

The study, presented by Christopher Sanderson (pictured above), co-founder of The Future Laboratory, explored how expressions of wealth are becoming less overt and positioning products into everyday life is key.

Sanderson said consumers have an increasing desire to be part of a brand that is contributing to a better future. In addition, the report highlighted how buying power will soon be in the hands of the younger generation, with 85% of luxury spending to be controlled by this demographic by 2025. We are in the age of “luxury with purpose”, he said.

Arby Li, editor-in-chief of online men’s fashion destination Hypebeast, was in conversation with Elle’s editor, Genevra Leek, and spoke to the power of the “new wealthy” generations of X, Y and Z, and discussed the way Hypebeast continually evolves its audience comms via cross platform diversification.

Arby Li and Genevra Leek

At the conclusion of the events, Bauer Media GM of publishing and digital operations Sarah-Belle Murphy outlined a number of upcoming initiatives from Bauer’s luxury brands and announced the publisher’s 2019 agenda.

Murphy announced a unique new brand for Gen Z, the “consumers-with-purpose” of the future. Currently in development, the brand will be created by a Gen Z steering committee for Gen Z  audiences, and will live as a digital destination supported with two collectible print volumes.

In the coming months, Bauer will launch “The Luxurians network” to leverage the power of Bauer’s brand’s reach across emerging luxurians.  The Luxurians Networks will aim to connect advertisers with the luxury consumer and unlock valuable data and insights.

Harper’s Bazaar will launch the Beauty Festival, a consumer experience showcasing how technology and a global mentality is shaping consumption. This will bring leading experts and the latest innovations together to the brand’s beauty community.

In the Homes and Food category, Bauer Media will present Live Life Luxe, a content series sharing the lives of creative couples and their take on mindful living, which will come to life in digital and broadcast formats.

Murphy also discussed women’s wealth. Following on from last year’s successful No Gender Selective Tax campaign, Bauer Media is soon to announce an action plan to champion for change that supports a more equal financial future tackling issues such as financial abuse.

Facebook and Instagram partner with Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras

Facebook and Instagram Australia have announced a major partnership with the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras, unveiling a new national Pride campaign Share Your #FearlessStories.

Launching to celebrate LGBTQ people and support their communities on Facebook and Instagram, the campaign includes exclusive new tools for Australians to express themselves and share the spirit of Sydney Mardi Gras.

Instagram will also make its first appearance at the Parade with a show-stopping float, in partnership with Facebook, showcasing how the platforms support Australians to connect with the moments, people, and local communities they care about.

Beginning today, Australians will have access to new features launched specifically for Sydney Mardi Gras, to help everyone express themselves, celebrate their communities, and Share Your #FearlessStories.

On Facebook, a new Coming Out Life Event is now available to share these significant and ongoing moments, find support, or celebrate your pride. And because everyone’s experience is different, Facebook is making it easier to create custom Pride Life Events. From “Marched in my first Mardi Gras” to “Celebrated Australian Marriage Equality”, you can share a special moment to express yourself and inspire others with an animated rainbow flag and customisable titles.

On Instagram, the platform has partnered with Sydney Mardi Gras to identify 50 LGBTQ hashtags used by Australians, and has transformed them into rainbow hashtags throughout Sydney Mardi Gras.

From #SydneyMardiGras to #SydneyRainbowCrossing, whenever you use one of the hashtags in a feed post, it will turn a rainbow gradient, to encourage more people to discover and explore the photos and videos from people throughout the community.

In Instagram Stories, the platform will continue the rainbow versions of the Location, Hashtag, and @Mention Stickers to turn any moment into a Mardi Gras celebration.

Instagram is also sharing details to provide greater understandings into how LGBTQ communities are sharing and connecting on Facebook, with new findings showing there are over one million Australians who like at least one LGBTQ page on Facebook, and that in the last year, the size of LGBTQ groups on Facebook more than doubled in membership.

Instagram has also shared new details on how people are interacting throughout Sydney Mardi Gras on the platform, with posts about Sydney Mardi Gras receiving over six million likes throughout the 2018 season.

Instagram saw rainbow emojis spike 150% over Sydney Mardi Gras parade and party weekend, and discovered Victoria Park was the top check-in location of last year’s festival.

Continued at

Mercado on TV: The bad, the good and the cracking TV chemistry

Three new Aussie dramas debut on TV next week but sadly, the best of them will be the least watched.

By Andrew Mercado

It all kicks off Monday on Nine with Bad Mothers being described as “Desperate Housewives meets Big Little Lies”. They wish – it’s more like “House Husbands meets Bite Club”. Following Australia’s number-one show, Married At First Sight, will deliver a huge audience to Bad Mothers but will viewers be disappointed that none of the male characters are as sleazy as the douchebags on MAFS? And with one “wife” being described as the c-word by her “husband”, surely bad mothers acting not very bad is a cop-out.

Badness in Bad Mothers means one steals a puppy while two others get drunk in the middle of the day. Melissa George is “very very bad” and has done just one interview about the show, so good on TV Week for refusing to ignore her infamous “croissant in Paris” tantrum about being “constantly associated with a show she left 16 years ago.” Apparently she is over that now, which must be why TV Week “re-lives her biggest Home And Away moments”. Bless.

Ms Fisher’s Modern Murder Mysteries screens Thursday on Seven with Phyrne’s niece Peregrine (Geraldine Hakewill, pictured) moving into her aunt’s house – and discovering that everything in the wardrobe fits her perfectly! Seven wants you to believe she is a thoroughly modern girl, but apart from the mod 1960’s era, this show is as old fashioned as they come, and the killings are borderline ludicrous. What is fresh, though, is the crackling chemistry between Geraldine Hakewill and Joel Jackson, who plays the dopey detective/unrequited love interest. Seven has always been good at finding new talent and then keeping them in the family, and these two are keepers.

ABC’s new serial drama, The Heights, is a fascinating melting pot of multicultural characters, some of whom live in a troubled public housing tower, and others who live around it in more gentrified surrounds. The mix between older and younger characters is perfect and I am immediately hooked by it because it’s authentic and brave.

Unfortunately, the ABC has a terrible history of ruining its Aussie soaps by fiddling with the time slots, but at least Bellbird and Something In The Air got the chance to find an audience before clueless programmers ruined them. The Heights is being dumped onto Fridays, with two half hour episodes airing back to back. Never mind that that it has been written and edited as separate instalments with cliffhangers, instead the ABC will give it the kiss of death from night one. Why the ABC commissioned a nightly soap to then screen weekly is a mystery only Ms Fisher could solve.

Nielsen weekly Digital Content Ratings: News and Travel

In the weekly DCR data from Nielsen for the week ending February 10, the news rankings of publishers is the same as the month of January but for two exceptions.

In the weekly data, sits at #2, swapping places with ABC News websites, which drops a spot to third.

The other change is MSN News slipping into the top 10 at #10, replacing The West Australian.

In the Travel category for the week ending February 10, Travel is way ahead of the pack. Nine’s publishing vertical Traveller sits at #2, yet some distance behind.

Seven West Media’s fledgling makes the top five of the category.

BBC First announces Les Misérables to launch this March

BBC First is to launch the highly anticipated series Les Misérables on Sunday March 10 at 8.30pm.

Adapted by the award-winning screenwriter Andrew Davies (Pride and Prejudice, War and Peace), the landmark drama has gone back to the novel and delved deep into the many layers of Hugo’s story, revelling in Jean Valjean’s and Javert’s cat-and-mouse relationship against the epic backdrop of France at a time of civil unrest.

The star-studded cast includes Golden Globe nominees Dominic West (The Affair, Tomb Raider, Appropriate Adult) as Jean Valjean, David Oyelowo (Selma, Gringo, Spooks) as Javert and Lily Collins (The Last Tycoon, Rules Don’t Apply) as Fantine.

Lily Collins is Fantine – the tragic central character

Golden Globe and BAFTA winner and Oscar nominee Olivia Colman (The Favourite, The Crown) plays Madame Thénardier with BAFTA winner Adeel Akhtar (The Night Manager, Unforgotten) as her husband. Ellie Bamber (Nocturnal Animals, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies) is Cosette, Josh O’Connor (The Durrells, Ripper Street) is Marius and Erin Kellyman (Raised By Wolves) is Eponine.

Les Misérables is the story of Jean Valjean, a former convict unable to escape the shadow of his past life. His future is threatened by his nemesis, the chilling police office and former prison guard Javert, who is determined to bring him to justice.

Olivia Colman and Adeel Akhtar as the greedy owners of the village inn

Meanwhile Fantine, a working class woman abandoned by her rich lover, is driven to increasingly desperate measures to provide for her young daughter. Their stories collide and as revolutionary violence ignites on the streets of Paris, Jean Valjean begins an epic journey towards self-acceptance, redemption and love.

The Lookout Point and BBC Studios production, which does not feature any songs, is adapted by Andrew Davies from the French novel by Victor Hugo and directed by Tom Shankland. Produced by Chris Carey, filming for Les Misérables took place in Belgium and Northern France.

Top photo: Dominic West as Jean Valjean

TV Ratings Analysis: Thursday February 14

• Big Bash League semifinal leads Seven to first survey win
• 10 recovers with Gogglebox top 10, Changing Rooms better

By James Manning

Thursday: Week 7 2019

FTA TV news/current affairs

• Seven News 873,000/806,000
• Nine News 749,000/741,000
• A Current Affair 646,000
• ABC News 595,000
• 7.30 504,000
• 10 News First 334,000
• The Project 211,000/323,000
• SBS World News 94,000

Breakfast TV

• Sunrise 281,000
Today 189,000


It has been a while since we have been able to note it took the channel until the fifth night of the new survey year to rank #1 either primary channel or combined channel share.

Seven did both last night with the first of the Big Bash League semifinals.

The match between Hobart Hurricanes and Melbourne Stars was a good contest until Glenn Maxwell arrived at the crease and blasted Melbourne to victory.

The first session audience was 458,000, which grew to 527,000 for session two.


With no Married At First Sight last night and the NRL season a few weeks away, Nine was back in second place.

A Current Affair slipped under 650,000 and then two episodes of Young Sheldon did 475,000 and 411,000.

The 2016 movie Jason Bourne then did 312,000.


Share improved significantly from Wednesday night, but it wasn’t close to the previous Thursday’s winning 18.2% with Celebrity in the schedule.

The channel’s Thursday best was Gogglebox with 565,000 pushing it into the top 10 and making it #1 show for the night under 50 and in all key demos. Gogglebox debuted a week ago with 701,000.

The second episode of Changing Rooms improved, but not enough to find it a place in the top 20. After just over 200,000 on Wednesday, the Thursday episode did 298,000.

The network and its advertisers are really going to be hoping the Dancing With The Stars and Sunday Night Takeaway debuts find an audience in the next 10 days.


The most watched “property porn” program last night was Escape From The City which did 447,000 with Jane Hall helping the house hunters around Margaret River.

Grand Designs Australia then did 345,000.

Week 7 TV: Thursday
ABC Seven Nine 10 SBS
ABC 12.1% 7 20.5% 9 17.6% 10  12.6% SBS One 4.2%
ABC 2 2.8% 7TWO 3.2% GO! 3.3% 10 Bold 3.9% VICELAND 1.1%
ABC ME 0.5% 7mate 3.9% GEM 2.9% 10 Peach 2.4% Food Net 1.4%
ABC NEWS 1.5% 7flix 2.7% 9Life 1.9%     NITV 0.2%
    7Food 1.5%            
TOTAL 16.8%   31.7%   25.6%   18.9%   7.0%


ABC Seven Affiliates Nine Affiliates 10 Affiliates SBS
ABC 12.0% 7 18.8% 9 16.0% WIN 10.7% SBS One 4.1%
ABC 2 3.4% 7TWO 5.9% GO! 3.7% WIN Bold 3.7% VICELAND 1.3%
ABC ME 1.4% 7mate 3.9% GEM 3.9% WIN Peach 2.2% Food Net 1.4%
ABC NEWS 1.3% 7flix 2.9% 9Life 2.4% Sky News  on WIN 0.8% NITV 0.2%
TOTAL 18.1%   31.5%   26.0%   17.4%   7.0%


82.7% 17.3%
Thursday FTA
  1. Seven News Seven 873,000
  2. Seven News / Today Tonight Seven 806,000
  3. Nine News Nine 749,000
  4. Nine News 6:30 Nine 741,000
  5. A Current Affair Nine 646,000
  6. ABC News ABC 595,000
  7. Gogglebox 10 565,000
  8. Seven’s Cricket: Big Bash League – SF1 Hobart v Melb Stars S2 Seven 527,000
  9. 7.30 ABC 504,000
  10. The Chase Australia Seven 488,000
  11. Young Sheldon Nine 475,000
  12. Seven’s Cricket: Big Bash League – SF1 Hobart v Melb Stars Inn B Seven 460,000
  13. Seven’s Cricket: Big Bash League – SF1 Hobart v Melb Stars S1 Seven 458,000
  14. Escape From The City ABC 447,000
  15. Young Sheldon (R) Nine 411,000
  16. Hot Seat Nine 378,000
  17. Grand Designs Australia ABC 345,000
  18. 10 News First 10 334,000
  19. The Project 7pm 10 323,000
  20. Jason Bourne Nine 312,000
Demo Top Fives

16-39 Top 5

  1. Gogglebox 10 126,000
  2. Seven’s Cricket: Big Bash League – SF1 Hobart v Melb Stars S2 Seven 125,000
  3. Seven’s Cricket: Big Bash League – SF1 Hobart v Melb Stars Inn B Seven 113,000
  4. Seven’s Cricket: Big Bash League – SF1 Hobart v Melb Stars S1 Seven 98,000
  5. Seven News Seven 91,000


18-49 Top 5

  1. Gogglebox 10 261,000
  2. Seven’s Cricket: Big Bash League – SF1 Hobart v Melb Stars S2 Seven 198,000
  3. Nine News 6:30 Nine 189,000
  4. Seven’s Cricket: Big Bash League – SF1 Hobart v Melb Stars Inn B Seven 179,000
  5. Nine News Nine 173,000


25-54 Top 5

  1. Gogglebox 10 317,000
  2. Nine News 6:30 Nine 249,000
  3. Nine News Nine 229,000
  4. Seven’s Cricket: Big Bash League – SF1 Hobart v Melb Stars S2 Seven 223,000
  5. Seven News Seven 217,000
Thursday Multichannel
  1. Peppa Pig-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 160,000
  2. Peter Rabbit ABCKIDS/COMEDY 160,000
  3. Ben And Holly’s Little Kingdom ABCKIDS/COMEDY 157,000
  4. Rusty Rivets ABCKIDS/COMEDY 152,000
  5. NCIS (R) 10 Bold 150,000
  6. Peppa Pig-AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 147,000
  7. School Of Roars-AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 143,000
  8. Octonauts ABCKIDS/COMEDY 142,000
  9. Bluey-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 142,000
  10. Dino Dana ABCKIDS/COMEDY 139,000
  11. Go Jetters-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 129,000
  12. PJ Masks-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 125,000
  13. Kiddets-AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 124,000
  14. Hey Duggee-AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 120,000
  15. Andy’s Wild Adventures ABCKIDS/COMEDY 119,000
  16. Father Brown-PM 7TWO 116,000
  17. Bondi Rescue E2 (R) 10 Bold 113,000
  18. Death In Paradise 9Gem 109,000
  19. Shaun The Sheep ABCKIDS/COMEDY 107,000
  20. M- X-Men Origins: Wolverine-PM 7mate 105,000
Thursday Subscription TV
  1. Live: BBL: SF1 Hurricanes v Stars FOX CRICKET 270,000
  2. Live: Between The Innings FOX CRICKET 269,000
  3. Live: BBL: SF1 Hurricanes v Stars FOX CRICKET 254,000
  4. Live: BBL Post Game FOX CRICKET 184,000
  5. Live: B4 The Bash! FOX CRICKET 91,000
  6. Ron Iddles: The Good Cop crime + investigation 68,000
  7. Call The Midwife BBC First 56,000
  8. The Bolt Report Sky News Live 51,000
  9. Paul Murray Live Sky News Live 44,000
  10. Outback Opal Hunters Discovery Channel 41,000
  11. Gold Rush Discovery Channel 37,000
  12. PML Later Sky News Live 35,000
  13. The Simpsons FOX8 33,000
  14. The Simpsons FOX8 33,000
  15. America’s Got Talent: The Champions FOX8 32,000
  16. Credlin Sky News Live 31,000
  17. Criminal Minds TVH!TS 29,000
  18. NCIS TVH!TS 29,000
  19. Escape To The Country LifeStyle Channel 28,000
  20. Bones TVH!TS 27,000

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

Media News Roundup

Business Of Media

Former chairman says “ABC can no longer be relied upon”

Anyone who saw former ABC television presenter and staff-elected board member Quentin Dempster’s defence of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation on Sky News’s Kenny on Media program the other day would have been thoroughly impressed by his fancy footwork and practised sidestepping, comments former ABC chairman Marice Newman in The Australian.

Dempster doesn’t speak for the ABC but after 30 years’ service he remains a passionate advocate. There are few people inside or outside the corporation more steeped in its culture and workings.

The program sought Dempster’s views on the ABC, and although host Chris Kenny’s questions were polite but firm, it appeared the two were in a parallel universe. While Kenny’s approach was about public accountability, Dempster painted the broadcaster as a divine franchise around which the taxpayer revolves.

The reality [is] the national broadcaster was created for a bygone era to culturally unite and cater to the needs of a scattered population of less than seven million who were poorly served by private operators, which lacked resources, diversity and reach. Today, population growth, technology and access to diverse opinions have rendered that 1932 model truly obsolete.

And being nostalgic and romanticising the ABC’s place in Australia’s development still won’t hide the fact that taxpayers are being forced to spend $1.1b a year to support a poorly governed, digitally disrupted, ideologically driven broadcaster that can no longer be relied upon to serve their best interests.

[Read the original]

What Australian audiences have loved most on the BBC

Australian TV audiences have been polled by BBC Studios as part of global research to find out their favourite heart-warming moments from BBC programs.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle

The results are being released ahead of the annual BBC Showcase event in Liverpool where hundreds of TV buyers are entertained and encouraged to purchase from the BBC’s deep catalogue.

Topping the chart of favourite moments was also what Australians opted for as their #1 choice – BBC coverage of Royal Weddings.

The top 10 moments globally were:

1. The Royal Weddings (UK broadcasters)

2. Sherlock (Hartswood for BBC One) – Best man speech

3. Ariana Grande (BBC Studios for BBC One) One Love Manchester

4. Planet Earth II (BBC Studios/BBC America/ZDF/Tencent/FTV for BBC One) – Iguana snake escape

5. Doctor Who (BBC Studios for BBC One)– Van Gogh exhibition

6. Pride & Prejudice (BBC Studios for BBC One) – Mr Darcy declaring his love to Elizabeth

7. Life on Earth (BBC Studios for BBC One) Sir David Attenborough meets the silverback gorillas

8. Blue Planet II (BBC Studios/BBC America/The Open University/Tencent/WDR/FTV/CCTV9 for BBC One) – Tusk fish opens clam

9. Dynasties (BBC Studios/BBC America/ FTV/Tencent Penguin Pictures/CCTV-9 for BBC One) – David the chimpanzee’s return

10. Top Gear (BBC Studios for BBC One) – Launching a Reliant Robin on a space shuttle

Coverage of the Royal Weddings made the top spot in Australia, France, Germany, India and the USA and appears six times in the top three, including in China.

The BBC commented the results reflect the growing appetite global audiences have for factual programs, with Sir David Attenborough presenting or narrating four of the top 10 titles, from the emotionally charged return of David the chimpanzee in recent landmark natural history series Dynasties to the heart-in-the-mouth sequence as an iguana flees killer snakes in Planet Earth II.

Paul Dempsey, president of global markets, BBC Studios, said: “Whether it’s an intimate feel-good moment in a drama or an extraordinary story from the natural world, our shows make hearts skip a beat.

“Next week customers from around the world can find out about our new content and to talk to our producers and commissioners about making tomorrow’s global hits.”

Key titles on offer at BBC Showcase this year include Andrew Davies’ adaptation of Jane Austen’s unfinished novel Sanditon; an adaptation of Terry Pratchet’s Good Omens; new crime drama The Mallorca Files; the BBC drama Pure; Louis Theroux’s Altered States; the natural history series One Planet: Seven Worlds; and Dead Pixels, a new comedy from Peep Show creators Sam Bain and Jesse Armstrong.

Foxtel’s Brian Walsh joins stars, producer at season 2 Secret City launch

Foxtel this week held a launch event for the second season of its Secret City. The new instalment is called Secret City: Under The Eagle.

Brian Walsh with Rob Collins and Danielle Cormack

Held at The Mint in Sydney’s CBD, the event was hosted by Foxtel’s executive director of TV Brian Walsh. He spoke with a number of the cast onstage in addition to speaking with executive producer Penny Chapman.

Among the guests was the new managing director of Matchbox Pictures Alastair McKinnon.

All six episodes will be released to stream on Foxtel from Monday March 4 at 8.30pm and also available to screen each week on Fox Showcase.

Secret City cast Rob Collins, Laura Gordon, Louisa Mignone, Sacha Horler, Justin Smith and Danielle Cormack

Leading the cast are Anna Torv (Fringe, Mindhunter) who reprises her Logie Award winning role as Harriet Dunkley and once again joins two-time Academy Award nominee Jacki Weaver (Animal Kingdom, Silver Linings Playbook) as they lead an ensemble cast, for the series filmed in Parliament House and locations across Canberra and Sydney.

Also starring in Under The Eagle are Logie Award winning actors Danielle Cormack (Wentworth, Rake, Underbelly Razor) who plays maverick Independent MP Karen Kotoufides, Don Hany (Ali’s Wedding, Tangle) who plays Australian Prime Minister Ewan Garrity and Rob Collins (The Wrong Girl, Cleverman) who plays Lieutenant Joseph Sullivan.

Secret City: Under the Eagle is written by Matt Cameron (writer/co-producer/creator Sunshine, writer/producer Jack Irish) and Belinda Chayko (showrunner/writer Safe Harbour, story producer/writer Barracuda) who both wrote for the first series and playwright Angela Betzien (Eggs, The Hanging) and Elise McCredie (Sunshine, Nowhere Boys).

Penny Win, Foxtel’s drama development executive Carly Heaton, Secret City: Under The Eagle writer/showrunner Matt Cameron, Secret City producer Stephen Corvini and Penny Chapman

Stephen Corvini (Safe Harbour, Hyde and Seek) is producer for the series, Matt Cameron is showrunner and executive producers are Foxtel’s head of drama Penny Win and drama development executive Carly Heaton and Penny Chapman from Matchbox Pictures.

Secret City: Under the Eagle is a Matchbox Pictures production for Foxtel, supported by Create NSW and Screen Canberra. NBCUniversal International Distribution will distribute the series worldwide.

Original Changing Rooms host didn’t watch Network 10’s reboot

If you skipped last night’s reboot of Changing Rooms don’t worry you’re not alone – original host Suzie Wilks did too, reports’s Hannah Paine.

The much-hyped return was a spectacular ratings flop last night, with just 204,000 metro viewers tuning in for its premiere.

“I’ve got to confess, I’ve been a Married At First Sight addict,” Wilks told

“I love a bit of romance …I did have a little look here and there (at Changing Rooms), but I was with a girlfriend and she too is addicted to Married At First Sight. We just ended up back there and of course it’s hard to take your eyes off it!”

Wilks hosted the original Changing Rooms from 1998 to 2005 and retired from TV and radio a few years later to focus on being a mother to daughter Ruby, now seven.

[Read the original]


How Hobart breakfast show celebrated Valentine’s Day with listeners

To celebrate Valentine’s Day, Hobart’s Hit 100.9 breakfast show with Jimmy & Nath decided to make it all about the ladies of Hobart – inviting a group of listeners to Fondru’s Restaurant and Wine Bar on Wednesday, evening for a special women’s only celebration.

Single, married, divorced or de-facto – no matter their relationship status, all women were welcome to join the shortlist to experience a special Valentine’s treat, with only 30 lucky ladies invited to attend with their gal pals.

Presented with roses on arrival, the guests were treated to wine flights and cheeses – while Jimmy & Nath were relegated to the service team; delivering plates of food, and clearing dirty glasses with a complete ban on them having any fun!

After a night working hard serving drinks Nath said, “My girlfriend doesn’t know I spent the night making a whole room of other women feel special, please don’t tell her.”

“I was told I couldn’t have fun so I had been practicing not smiling…it’s been a difficult time in my life” said Jimmy.

Sports Media

Super Rugby metro TV ratings fall below A-League levels in 2018

Rugby fans appeared to move past the axing of the Western Force and switch back on to Super Rugby last year with a 9% uplift in average audience across Australia, reports The Sydney Morning Herald’s Georgina Robinson.

But with the move from five franchises to four the competition’s pay television audience in the big cities languished just below the A-League, providing further impetus, on the eve of the new season, for Australia to push for change in the next broadcast cycle.

Rugby Australia figures showed Super Rugby matches played in Australia attracted an average audience of 71,000 last year, up 9% on 2017, a season that was dogged by speculation over which Australian team would be cut from the competition and by a record poor performance from the NSW Waratahs, the team representing Australia’s largest fan base.

But further OzTAM ratings obtained by the Herald showed that figure plummeted in the five metropolitan cities, attracting an average pay television audience of just 50,000, which was less than the A-League’s 51,000 and a fraction of the NRL’s 164,000 and AFL’s 167,000. Super Rugby went from five franchises in 2017 to four in 2018 after the Force’s axing.

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Seven’s Jacqui Felgate to replace Sam MacClure on AFL coverage

Another female voice is being added to Channel Seven’s footy coverage with golden girl newsreader Jacqui Felgate set for a pivotal role, report News Corp’s Sam Edmund and Scott Gullan.

Felgate, who is one of the network’s weekend presenters, will replace Sam McClure in the Footy Central chair on Friday and Saturday nights.

The cross-promotion of one of their female rising stars was seen as a key reason for the move after McClure parted ways with Seven.

Felgate has been increasing her football profile this season, appearing on the boundary line at AFLW games.

McClure, who was also a Talking Footy panellist, declined an offer from Seven to become a full-time sport reporter, preferring to focus on his current mix of radio and print roles.

There is a fair bit of shuffling of the decks happening down at Seven’s Docklands headquarters with Tim Watson to make his return to Talking Footy.

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