Tuesday October 8, 2019

10 reality EP predicts Bachelorette Angie Kent could be the best

• “Very upfront – feisty and funny – tells it like it is to the guys”

By James Manning

Producer Hilary Innes steers the production of both The Bachelor and The Bachelorette for Network 10. Finding a new Bachelorette is never easy, but she’s convinced Angie Kent is a good one.

The Bachelorette starts its fifth season this week, not long after the seventh season of The Bachelor finished.

Casting the lead role is key of course to both strains of the franchise and much depends on it. This year the producers settled on the second celebrity that has fronted the series in five years – Kent. She follows Sam Frost, Georgia Love, Sophie Monk and last year’s Ali Oetjen.

Picking celebrities seems to help ratings, but they are not easy to find, Innes explained to Mediaweek. “We have had two – Sophie and now Angie – one well known and the other starting out. It is good to mix it up. As we showed when we went from Nick Cummins to Matt Agnew, to go back to someone unknown can be refreshing. After Nick we needed a circuit breaker and Matt was a great circuit breaker.

Hilary Innes with Angie Kent

“On The Bachelorette most have been known to TV audiences in that both Sam and Ali had been on The Bachelor. [Georgia was a TV journalist.]

It is a very difficult role to cast. They need to be such unique people and really have an X Factor about them.

Age is a critical factor in casting the lead because that then impacts the age of the bachelors. “We went quite a bit older with Sophie, she was 36, where the Bachelorettes have traditionally been in their late 20s.

“We like to have a broad age range in the cast for the audience – we usually have a spread of guys or girls from early 20s to late 30s.”

Although casting the lead first in either series is preferable, Innes said that hasn’t happened in every season. “We can then cast around that person to help us to have a love story with a happy ending. It doesn’t always work that way and that is ok. But hopefully we will find someone for them. The person chosen for either series gives us a brief on the type of person they are looking for and we are then mindful of that in the casting.

Revealing the lead early is helpful in tracking the types of people who would be attracted to him or her.

One of Kent’s requests was for people with a sense of humour. “Otherwise she was quite broad – certainly not just wanting someone tall, dark and handsome. She hasn’t had a relationship for about eight years because she hasn’t been ready again after some earlier in her life.”

Kent has said that appearing in 10’s I’m A Celebrity helped her “find herself” to some extent and made appearing in The Bachelorette appealing.

Network 10 executive producers have a track record of improving on their major franchises each season and Innes said this new season of The Bachelorette is no exception.

“It is jam pack full of content. The challenge was how to fit in all the content we generated during the shoot. Angie has given herself to the role like no one has before. In the sense of opening herself up and being brave enough to show her emotions and vulnerabilities.

It can be very draining and a physically challenging process to be without any of your usual people around you. During the three-month shoot there is no media, no internet, no phone – none of anyone’s usual toolkit.

“Angie is very serious about finding someone and it was great to see. Viewers will see how good that has been for the program. She is a very upfront girl as viewers would have seen on Goggleboxshe is feisty and funny and tells it like it is to some of the guys which makes for great viewing.”

Innes of course wouldn’t talk too much about how successful the search for love was this season. The series has been finished and 10 only films one ending unlike some other reality shows trying to safeguard the end result.

“We film what happens and there is only one thing that happens when they reveal the person they choose. Or in the case of Nick Cummins they don’t chose anyone!”

Osher Günsberg’s workload

Innes is happy her Bachelor franchise host is also having success away from the formats:

“I am very happy for Osher because he is so good on an entertainment format like The Masked Singer. He has carved out a completely different persona for the new show. It has been made for a broad family audience. Osher is so good at picking the mood for different series.

The Late Late Show

Shoots on The Bachelor and The Bachelorette can go late into the night. Innes explained: “It can go into the early hours of the morning because we have to film the cocktail party and the rose ceremony in the same night. You can’t stop and come back and get the same emotions.”

Innes is often on set and she said the latest she had arrived home from one of the late shoots was about 5am.

OzTAM introduces VOZ: Measurement for all screens and cross platform

OzTAM, Regional TAM and Nielsen is launching a dedicated website in the lead up to debuting Virtual Australia.

(VOZ), the foundation of Australia’s new Total TV reporting standard.

A VOZ campaign, sub-titled Televisionary Measurement, will illustrate how VOZ will bring together broadcast viewing on TV sets and connected devices to provide all-screen, cross-platform planning and reporting for Australia’s television industry.

Initial VOZ data will be introduced to market in Q1 2020.

OzTAM CEO Doug Peiffer said: “VOZ will deliver step change in the way Australian television is measured and evaluated, providing a true national view of how TV content is consumed across all screens over time, and showing the incremental reach that broadcast video on demand (BVOD) delivers.

“It’s been an enormous project to bring the different measurement systems for TV and BVOD together to capture the cross-screen universe, where on average Australian households have 1.8 TV sets and a total of 6.8 screens.=

“Accordingly, OzTAM, Regional TAM and Nielsen have undertaken a rigorous three-year development, testing and rollout program to bring VOZ to market.

“The positive industry feedback on VOZ is gratifying, and we’re excited to launch a trade marketing campaign ahead of initial VOZ data being released next year.”

Regional TAM chairman Dave Walker added: “The VOZ Total TV reporting standard is a milestone for Australian television.

“Bringing Regional TAM and OzTAM data together will make it easier than ever before to plan, post-analyse and allocate investment nationally and by market.

“VOZ will clarify Australia’s Total TV picture, greatly benefitting advertisers who wish to target viewers in regional Australia and country-wide.

“Regional TAM broadcasters are proud to be part of this important initiative.”

Nielsen’s head of TV Audience Measurement, David Ellem, commented: “Together with OzTAM and Regional TAM, Nielsen is proud to support the launch of VOZ.

“This innovation means that the industry will soon have independent, standardised and transparent metrics for reporting Total TV, and de-duplicated audience reach and frequency metrics for planning and evaluating Total TV audiences.”

Foxtel reveals life with less Disney content: New movie channel line-up

• As Disney withdraws some of its content from local platforms ahead of the launch of Disney+, Foxtel has revealed its new summer movies line-up. 

Stan will also be losing some of its Disney content as current deals expire.

Foxtel Movies

From November 7, a refreshed Foxtel Movies service with 10 dedicated linear movies channels will include a new family movie channel Foxtel Movies Kids, a new dedicated Movies Ultra HD channel for iQ4 customers and over 1000 movies will continue to be available to stream On Demand. 

The Disney Movie channel will no longer be available from early November including titles from Disney Animation, Pixar, and Marvel as a result of the Disney+ launch later that month.

Movies Kids will replace Disney Movies and promises to be a world of fun for kids, all in one safe place. Key content at launch will include kids’ favourites Shaun the Sheep, Storks, Wallace & Gromit: Curse of the Were Rabbit, Adventures of Elmo in Grouch Land, Early Man and many more. More titles will be added weekly once the channel launches on November 7. The new Movies Kids channel will complement the popular Foxtel Movies Family channel where favourite animations continue including Shrek, How To Train Your Dragon, Megamind, Shark Tale, Monsters Vs Aliens and the biggest family favourite franchises such as Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts, Home Alone, as well as the latest new Family films like The Kid Who Would be King A Dog’s Way Home and coming in December, The Lego Movie 2 and Wonder.

Family viewing will continue on the Movies Family channel over the summer with hits from DreamWorks including Shrek, Shark Tale, Over the Hedge, Monsters v Aliens and Flushed Away.

Foxtel Movies Ultra HD (replacing the Rugby World Cup 4K channel) will include this year’s blockbuster hits such as Aquaman, Bumblebee and titles including MI: Ghost Protocol, Saving Private Ryan, and movies from the wizarding world with all eight Harry Potter movies as well as Fantastic Beasts & Where to Find Them, and Fantastic Beasts: The  Crimes of Grindlewald.

Other changes in the refreshed Foxtel Movie line-up include:

Masterpiece Movies refreshed as Movies Drama.
More Movies refreshed as Movies Hits.
Movie Greats refreshed as Movies Masterpiece.

First release and classic Disney movies will continue to be available in Foxtel Store including the Box Office hit of the The Lion King, Aladdin, Toy Story 4, Finding Nemo and Frozen, as well as classics Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, Beauty & the Beast, and many more.

Continuing Disney content on Foxtel

Foxtel’s Disney partnership over summer will also include the kids’ channels Disney and Disney Jnr. Foxtel anticipates it will continue past there as Disney’s policy is to retain these channels globally.

Foxtel will continue to screen new and returning series from Disney Freeform’s young adult catalogue, with titles such as Siren, Runaways, and Good Trouble.  Disney will also provide Foxtel with an extensive range of new and library titles from the 20th Century Fox catalogue including animation favourites such as The Simpsons, Family Guy, American Dad, and Bob’s Burgers, plus sitcoms like Modern Family and Fresh Off The Boat.

In addition, Foxtel will remain the exclusive home in Australia of Disney’s newly acquired FX studio, which this year, has produced series like the Emmy Award-winning Fosse/Verdon, and Ryan Murphy’s Pose and American Crime Story.

In 2020, FX will deliver to Foxtel Cate Blanchett’s new drama series, Mrs America and the highly anticipated event series, Shogun, based on the novel by James Clavell.

Elizabeth Baker
Zenith forecast: Social overtakes print to be third-largest ad channel

• Overall, Zenith forecasts that global adspend will grow by 4.4%

• Global adspend growth steady at 4.4%, Australia lower on 2.8%
• Adspend on social media expected to grow 20% in 2019 and account for a 13% share of global adspend

Advertisers will spend more on social media platforms than on print for the first time this year, according to Zenith’s latest Advertising Expenditure Forecasts. Advertising expenditure on social media will grow 20% this year to reach US$84bn, while advertisers’ combined expenditure on newspapers and magazines will fall 6% to US$69bn.

Social media will be the third-largest channel for advertising this year, with a 13% share of global adspend, behind television (29%) and paid search (17%). Its growth is slowing as it matures, and is forecast at 17% in 2020 and 13% in 2021, when it will account for 16% of all global adspend.

“Social media advertising gives brands the opportunity to drive growth by using automated tools to optimise their campaigns for key business objectives,” said Matt James, Zenith’s Global Brand President. “By using first-party data from their own websites to identify potential customers on social media, brands can convert consumers who are already on the path to purchase and target look-a-like audiences more effectively.”

On the performance of social media in Australia, Zenith’s Head of Investment, Sydney, Elizabeth Baker (pictured) said: “Social is in a state of transition, with international platforms like TikTok, Pinterest and Twitch gaining significant traction among younger audiences – representing new opportunities for brands.”

Meanwhile, paid search advertising will exceed US$100bn for the first time this year, reaching US$107bn by the end of 2019. Paid search is growing at 8% a year and will amount to US$123bn in 2021, when it will account for 18% of total adspend.

In Australia, search adspend is expected to increase by an average of 3.7% each year until 2021, at which point it will represent 25% of total adspend at AU$ 4.3bn.

Television advertising continues to suffer from shrinking ratings in key markets, and will slip from US$182bn in 2019 to US$180bn in 2021, accounting for 27% of total adspend in the latter year. In Australia, linear broadcast TV will account for only 20% of total market spend by 2021, equivalent to AU$ 3.5bn.

Baker said it has been a tough year for the linear TV sector in Australia, which appears to be bearing much of the brunt of marketing budget contraction, particularly across the banking, auto and food categories.

“To reflect the economic environment and in consideration of latest SMI ad spend data, we have revised our 2019 TV forecast to -3.3%. However, we should start seeing more stability in revenue as we cycle against a weaker 2018 back quarter.

“In better news for our TV networks, BVOD revenue is booming and we anticipate growth will continue as measurable trading across linear and BVOD content is enabled via the launch of VOZ in 2020,” Baker said.

Adspend growth is slowing in Asia Pacific, with 4.4% growth forecast for 2019, after 6.9% growth in 2018. In this case, though, conditions have not deteriorated materially since the June forecasts, and Zenith’s expectations of growth for this year have held steady. China, Asia Pacific’s largest market by some margin, has been slowing down for some time as its scale has increased. The trade war with the US has also had some dampening effect on adspend, particularly by international brands that have had to be more cautious about their messaging and visibility. Zenith forecasts 4.5% growth in adspend in China this year, down from 7.8% growth in 2018, and an average annual growth rate of 8.7% between 2013 and 2018. China will nevertheless still be the second-biggest contributor to global ad growth in 2019, accounting for 14% of new ad dollars.

Global adspend growth steady at 4.3% to 4.4% a year

Overall, Zenith forecasts that global adspend will grow by 4.4% this year to reach US$640bn, down slightly from the 4.6% forecast made in June. Growth is expected to remain stable at 4.3% in 2020 and 4.4% in 2021 (as compared to the June forecast of 4.4% growth in 2020 and 4.3% in 2021). We would normally expect an increase in adspend in 2020, a ‘quadrennial’ year benefitting from US elections, the Summer Olympics and the UEFA Euro 2020 tournament. But given current political and economic uncertainty, brands are being cautious about committing to extra spending at the moment. This may change as the sports events approach, along with the opportunities they provide to reach valuable and engaged audiences. We will look out for signs of strengthening demand over the next few months.

“We have slightly downgraded our expectations for 2019 amid a marginally weaker trading environment,” said Jonathan Barnard, Head of Forecasting at Zenith. “But growth should then remain steady out to 2021, powered by the robust US advertising market.”

Taboola and Outbrain merge: A meaningful competitor to digital giants?

Taboola and Outbrain, two digital advertising platforms, have announced they have entered into an agreement to merge, subject to customary closing conditions. 

Both companies’ boards of directors have approved the transaction. The combined company will provide enhanced advertising efficacy and reach to marketers worldwide, while helping news organisations and other digital properties more effectively find growth in the years to come.

“Over the past decade, I’ve admired Outbrain and the innovation that Yaron Galai, Ori Lahav and the rest of the Outbrain team have brought to the marketplace. By joining forces, we’ll be able to create a more robust competitor to Facebook and Google, giving advertisers a more meaningful choice,” said Adam Singolda (pictured), founder & CEO of Taboola.

According to eMarketer, almost 70% of total US digital advertising revenue in 2019 is controlled by only three companies – Google, Facebook and Amazon. “We’re passionate about driving growth for our customers and supporting the open web, which we consider critical in a world where walled gardens are strong, and perhaps too strong. Working together, we will continue investing to better connect advertising dollars with local and national news organizations, strengthening journalism over the next decade. This is why we’re merging; this is our mission,” Singolda said.

“We are excited to partner with Taboola. Both Outbrain and Taboola have a shared mission and vision of supporting quality journalism globally and delivering meaningful value to the open web marketplace,” said Yaron Galai, co-Founder and co-CEO of Outbrain. “Ori and I had a vision of helping people discover quality content online, and we see a tremendous opportunity in joining forces in order to bring the next wave of innovation to our publisher partners and advertisers. I’m confident that together, we will be able to further our mission, which we call our Lighthouse, of bringing the best, most trustworthy content discovery capabilities to users around the world.”

Upon closing, Adam Singolda, the founder and current CEO of Taboola, will assume the CEO position of the combined company, which will operate under the Taboola brand name, with branding to be determined and to reflect the merger of the two companies. Under the terms of the merger agreement Outbrain shareholders will receive shares representing 30% of the combined company plus US$250 million of cash. The board of directors of the combined company will consist of current Taboola and Outbrain management and board members. Eldad Maniv, president & COO of Taboola and David Kostman, co-CEO of Outbrain will work closely together on managing all aspects of the post-merger integration. Yaron Galai will remain committed to the success of the combined company, and actively assist with the transition for the 12 months following the closing.

“We are fortunate to have great talent at both Outbrain and Taboola,” said Eldad Maniv. “As soon as the merger closes, we will work to integrate teams, technologies and infrastructures so we can quickly accelerate growth across all dimensions. We have set aggressive goals for bringing value to our customers, driving technology innovation and delivering financial results to our shareholders through increased efficacy and innovation. By working with David and the Outbrain team, I’m confident we can achieve them.”

“For over 10 years, each company has built incredibly powerful solutions that have helped tens of thousands of publishers and advertisers thrive,” said David Kostman. “I look forward to working together with Eldad and his team to bring together the best of each company’s technology, product and business expertise to build a compelling global open web alternative to Google and Facebook.”

The combined company will have over 2,000 employees across 23 offices, serving over 20,000 clients in more than 50 countries across the North America, Latin America, Europe, Middle East and Asia-Pacific regions.

Total Control: Australia’s finest shine bright in new Blackfella Films drama

• High stakes drama of ambition and betrayal might be year’s best TV

By James Manning

A chance meeting with Rachel Griffiths in Melbourne with Darren Dale from Blackfella Films was the genesis of what was originally called Black Bitch.

“I have had an idea for a show,” Griffiths said to Dale. “And I think you are the only one who could make it. Fourteen months later we were filming the series in Parliament House and Central West Queensland.”

Dale said Black Bitch was used all the way through production, but was changed to Total Control just prior to delivery to the ABC.

After watching two episodes the show is as every bit as compelling as last year’s Mystery Road. Total Control could very well be the best TV drama of 2019.

Deborah Mailman was ultimately cast as the lead, and she explained to Mediaweek she had a long relationship with the production house. “Redfern Now and Mabo, so it has always been a no-brainer for me to work with Blackfella films and Darren and [director] Rachel Perkins.

When the script fell into my lap it was pretty amazing to have been given such an incredible complex role.

Darren Dale and Deborah Mailman were talking during a Mediaweek Total Control podcast.

Listen to the 30-minute interview here.

Deborah Mailman and Darren Dale with Mediaweek’s James Manning

When Dale started to develop the idea about a political outsider who was an aboriginal woman, there was a lot of work to fill it out to a TV series.

“We often do politics a satire, like Rake. We wanted this to be in the tradition of great American shows and to help people make sense of politics in this country and the world happening around them.

“The writers then did the heavy lifting, creating fully dimensional characters, making sure the central character of Deb’s wasn’t a cardboard cut-out, to give her real range for someone with extraordinary talent like Deb. To see a Deb Mailman as we hadn’t seen before. Her role is certainly complex and not one you would expect.”

Talking about her process before she accepts a new role, Mailman said: “I read the early drafts of the script. With this, the first scene in the first episode knocked my socks off. I thought to myself that if this is how it is starting I can’t wait to see where it’s going.

“My character, Alex Irving, is from Winton and she goes out into the community where one of her jobs is handing out medications to people. As the episode starts a horrific event takes place, which puts her in the national headlines. A video of that goes viral and grabs the attention of the prime minister, played by Rachel Griffiths.

“She subsequently picks me to come into the senate. While what some may see as a publicity stunt, Alex sees as an opportunity to make a real difference for her people.”

When it came to casting the series, Dale said the producers had to convince Rachel Griffiths to play the prime minister. “As much as she had been involved in the conception and the authoring of the work, she hadn’t assumed she would play that role.

“We were mostly focussed on Deb’s character. As that character grew through the story, according to Rachel, I bullied her into doing it! At the end of the shoot, she said ‘I wish there was more for the prime minister to do.’

We are so lucky to have two great actresses headlining the show. It was pretty easy for the producers after we secured them. We were able to go to other great actors like William McInnes, Tony Hayes, Harry Richardson, Celia Ireland and Aaron Pedersen. The breadth of acting in this show is extraordinary.”

Aaron Pedersen with Deborah Mailman

Another great get for the producers was securing Harry Richardson as Jonathan Cosgrove, senior advisor to Mailman’s character. Richardson is a WAAPA graduate best known for his work in the UK in Dunkirk and the TV series Poldark where he plays Drake Carne, Demelza’s brother.

“This is his first real Australian series,” noted Mailman.

There is never any identification early on which party Griffiths is prime minister of. “We were careful at the beginning not to define who was in government. But you do get a sense that the government that Alex becomes a member of is definitely conservative.”

Dale said the first place the producers offered the project was the ABC. “They have been such champions of indigenous content and putting it front and centre on the main channel and in primetime. We know there was a loyal audience who has come to us before.

“They embraced it as we would have hoped. Sally Riley, the head of scripted took us in immediately. We had one meeting and then we were in development the next week.

“Our next step might be to look at a project that is wholly international,” added Dale.

Deborah Mailman with Darren Dale

Keshet, an Israeli producer and distributor invested what Dale “called a lot of money” to be involved. He said the amount was in the millions of dollars.

The scenes shot in Winton were the last part of the shoot, with Mailman telling Mediaweek they were there for over three weeks. “We started shooting in Sydney and then went to Canberra where we filmed in both the new and old Parliament House.

“When we got to Winton the locals were incredibly supportive and generous in having us. A few of the locals had parts to. We thought it was very important to show the opposing worlds that Alex lives in – from the outback with her family to the corridors of Parliament House.”

Total Control is coming to ABC TV and iview from Sunday October 13.

Top Photo: Deborah Mailman and Rachel Griffiths

ARIA Chart shake-up – Abbey Road #2, Rockhampton duo #5

• Singles: Take a bow Toni Watson, 20 weeks on chart, 10 at #1

By James Manning


Locked at #1 still is Tones And I with Dance Monkey – Who could have guessed that this unassuming yet hard-to-forget pop single would sit on the ARIA chart for 20 weeks (so far) and rank #1 for 10 of those weeks? In doing so it has set a new Australian record for weeks at #1. (See separate item.)

As well as breaking the Australian record for most weeks at #1, ARIA reports Tones And I this week equals the record for most weeks at #1 on the ARIA Singles Chart by a female solo act. The record is also currently held by Sandi Thom’s I Wish I Was a Punk Rocker (With Flowers in My Hair) (2010) and Whitney Houston’s I Will Always Love You (1992/93). The current record for most weeks at #1 on the ARIA Singles Chart is Ed Sheeran’s Shape Of You with 15 non-consecutive weeks at #1 in 2015.

Getting into the top 10 is a challenge as always. Eight of the 10 have been charting for 14 weeks or more and four have been charting for 20 weeks or more.

Watson has also conquered the UK this week to where Dance Monkey has hit #1, moving up from #7 after nine weeks on the chart.

Sam Smith was the only new arrival in the ARIA top 10 this week at #10 and it took How Do You Sleep? 11 weeks to get there.

A single track debuted inside the top 50 this week – Flume with Rushing Back featuring Vera Blue. The song was previewed live at Lollapalooza in the US two months ago where Vera Blue joined Flume onstage during his set.

English singer-songwriter Freya RidingsCastles snuck into the top 50 at #48 after three weeks on the chart.


A group who were apparently quite big the 60s, The Beatles, have stopped just short of claiming top spot with the 50th anniversary reissue of Abbey Road. It was most recently on the ARIA Album Chart in 2009 for the 40th Anniversary rerelease when it peaked at #12.

Previous Beatles’ 50th Anniversary rereleases in Australia have also hit the top 10 – Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band in 2017 and The White Album in 2018.

Abbey Road managed to top the most recent UK album chart and in doing so triggered a number of UK chart records:

Abbey Road is now the album with the longest time between reaching #1 on the Official UK Chart, at 49 years and 252 days. Its initial 17-week run at the top came to end on January 31st 1970. The Beatles previously held the record with their Sgt Pepper’s album, which had a gap of 49 years and 125 days between topping the chart, when its anniversary re-release reached #1 in June 2017.

Originating in Rockhampton is this week’s highest ARIA Album Chart debut – the duo Busby Marou. As their fourth album The Great Divide landed at #5, the local Rockhampton paper helped out with rebranding for the day (see photo). Their previous album Postcards From The Shell House peaked at #1 and three of their four albums have peaked in the top five.

The second of two albums debuting top 10 is Sydney’s Boy & Bear with Suck On Light entering the chart at #7. This is also their fourth album and their previous peaked at #1 – Limit Of Love.

Dean Lewis has re-entered the top 10 at #9 with A Place We Knew after 28 weeks on the chart. The jump follows his appearance at the AFL Grand Final a week ago.

The remaining six of eight new chart entries this week are:

#11 DaBaby with Kirk. The US rapper’s second album after the first, released earlier this year in the US, didn’t chart in Australia.
#12 Complete with Death Rattle. Debut album from the Perth hip hop artist.
#13 Steel Panther with Heavy Metal Rules. New album from glam-metal band still not afraid to both parody and celebrate rock music clichés.
#18 Hermitude with Pollyanarchy. The first album in four years from the Blue Mountains’ electronic hip-hop duo is their sixth and follows Dark Night Sweet Light, which peaked at #1 in 2015.
#20 Opeth with In Cauda Venenum. The 13th album from Swedish progressive metal band.
#25 Hellyeah with Welcome Home is the sixth album from the heavy metal band from Texas.

Tones and I
Tones and I breaks more ARIA records: chart run not over yet

• Sony Music’s Denis Handlin: “A very special artist who has captured world’s attention”

By James Manning

Tones And I has broken the record for most weeks at #1 on the ARIA Singles Chart by an Australian artist as she takes out her tenth consecutive week in the top spot with Dance Monkey.

The second single by the singer-songwriter has now broken the record previously held by Sydney group Justice Crew, who spent nine weeks at #1 in 2014 with Que Sera. The 3x platinum single is also the only Australian #1 on the ARIA Singles Chart for 2019 so far. During her reign at #1, she also surpassed the 32-year ARIA Charts record for most weeks at #1 by an Australian female solo artist, held by Kylie Minogue’s Locomotion since 1987, at seven weeks. The current record for most weeks at #1 on the ARIA Singles Chart is Ed Sheeran’s Shape Of You (2017) for 15 non-consecutive weeks.

Tones And I also appears on the ARIA Charts this week with the singles Johnny Run Away (#36, 2x platinum) and Never Seen The Rain (#23, platinum). She also appeared on the Albums Chart with her debut EP The Kids Are Coming (#3), released on Bad Batch Records via Sony Music Entertainment Australia.

Tones And I has gone from busking in Byron Bay to topping the charts globally in a matter of months, with Dance Monkey amassing over 250 million streams globally to date, with 175 million of those this month alone.

The weekend also saw Dance Monkey hit #1 on the UK Singles Chart, with the song jumping 6 places to claim the top spot in the UK with over 5.1million streams and 50,000 chart sales this week. She is the first Australian to top the UK charts since Iggy Azalea’s Problem with Ariana Grande in 2014. Dance Monkey also remains at number #1 on the Irish Singles Chart for a sixth week, where it is now the longest reigning #1 by an Australian artist this millennium. Dance Monkey has now hit the #1 position in 13 countries and is accredited Platinum in Ireland and New Zealand, plus Gold in both Denmark and Sweden.

Tones And I said:

“I am so thankful to Australia for all the support, this song was written for my friends at the Byron Bay backpackers, little did I know the whole country would be dancing to it, wow!”

Denis Handlin, Chairman & Chief Executive Officer, Australia & New Zealand and President, Asia, Sony Music Entertainment, said:

“I am so very proud of Tones and her incredible honour and achievement of becoming the longest running Australian artist at #1 on the ARIA singles chart, holding the top spot for 10 consecutive weeks. This is a true testament to her unique creative brilliance as an artist, her hard work and dedication, as well as her unwavering appreciation of her fans. Tones is a very special artist who has captured the world’s attention, and we look forward to continue working with her and her amazing music. Tones is the real deal.”

Dan Rosen, ARIA Chief Executive, said:

“Congratulations to Tones And I for her record-breaking chart performance. It is an incredible feat for any artist, let alone one who was busking on the streets a year earlier, and has just released her debut EP. Her success here and abroad is rewriting the rules of what an Australian artist can achieve, and I look forward to seeing her break more records in the coming weeks and years.”

Tones And I is half way through her sold-out Australian headline tour, which concludes in her hometown of Byron Bay on October 11 and has seen her performing at sold out venues around the country. Next month Tones And I will head overseas for her first ever European headline tour which is also completely sold-out. The dates include shows in Berlin, Cologne, Rotterdam, Amsterdam, and London. Following the European run, Tones And I will make her highly anticipated US debut with sold-out performances at New York City’s Mercury Lounge and Los Angeles’ El Cid. Tones And I has also been announced as playing at Laneway Festival 2020 and has announced a world tour from the end of February 2020. For all tickets and more information, visit www.tonesandi.com/tour-dates.

As well as breaking the Australian record for most weeks at #1, Tones And I this week equals the record for most weeks at #1 on the ARIA Singles Chart by a female solo act. The record, at 10 weeks, is also currently held by Sandi Thom’s I Wish I Was a Punk Rocker (With Flowers in My Hair) (2010) and Whitney Houston’s I Will Always Love You (1992/93).

The Block
TV ratings: October 7

• The Block: Courtyard reveals push the audience close to 1m
• The Masked Singer: Down week-on-week in all people & demos
• The Real Dirty Dancing: Short season ends with Jude & Steph routine

By James Manning

Monday Week 41 2019

• Seven News 933,000/958,000
• Nine News 867,000/936,000
• A Current Affair 766,000
• ABC News 635,000
• 7.30 573,000
• The Project 230,000/458,000
• 10 News First 342,000
• The Drum 166,000
• SBS World News 145,000

Breakfast TV

• Sunrise 239,000 
• Today 175,000


Home and Away started the week on 638,000 after a previous week average of 614,000.

The Real Dirty Dancing then wrapped with former Sydney Swan Jude Bolton and Olympic swimming star Stephanie Rice having the time of their life and successfully completing the famous final dance sequence – the iconic lift – in front of a packed house at the Enmore theatre. The audience watching the final instalment was 528,000. The short four-episode season launched a week ago with 580,000.


A Current Affair managed 766,000 on its first night after the introduction of daylight saving. The program averaged 706,000 last week. The program last night included a preview of Love Island, which launched last night.

The Block revealed the outdoor courtyards with Jesse and Mel winning, as teams worked out how to finish their properties with zero funds remaining. Mitch and Mark have some cash left, but they don’t sound like they are about to keep helping any of the other teams. The Monday audience was 979,000, well ahead of 10’s new champ The Masked Singer and well up on The Block from Monday last week on 806,000.

Love Island then launched on Nine’s primary channel for the first time. Host Sophie Monk and the contestants had a metro audience of 494,000 watching.


Rove McManus had a spot on The Project promoting his new kids’ books where he is the illustrator and the author. The entertainment all-rounder drew a hasty image of Steve Price as a cranky, climate denying, tap dancing wombat. The audience was on 458,000 after a week 40 average of 427,000. Rove was actually on before 7pm, with singer/songwriter Tove Lo the main guest later in the program.

The Masked Singer then had 880,000 watching the reveal at the end of the show with Darren McMullen pulling off his prawn head. The main part of the program had 700,000 watching. The comparable numbers from a week ago were 1.07m for the reveal and 836,000 for the remainder of the episode.

Have You Been Paying Attention? kept its average over 800,000 with Melanie Bracewell, Kitty Flanagan and Lawrence Mooney joining Ed and Sam. Angie Kent got a chance to ask some questions ahead of the launch of The Bachelorette tomorrow.

Just For Laughs then did 423,000 after 392,000 a week ago.


Australian Story went behind the scenes at the inquest into one of Australia’s most chilling cold cases, the 1975 murder of Perth brothel madam Shirley Finn. The episode was on 559,000 after 534,000 a week ago.

Crime night continued on Four Corners with a UK story about a serial killer working in a hospital. The unsettling story unfolded for an audience of 542,000.

Media Watch featured the axing of Seven’s Sunday Night and an update on tech reporter and editor David Richards. The episode did 468,000.

Q&A put the spotlight on aged care with Maggie Beer among the panellists for the audience of 318,000.


How the Victorians Built Britain did 209,000 at 7.30pm.

24 Hours in Emergency followed with 200,000.

Then it was a spin-off called 24 Hours in Police Custody with 162,000.

Week 40-41 TV: Friday-Monday
ABC Seven Nine 10 SBS
ABC 10.5% 7 18.4% 9 17.9% 10  10.3% SBS One 4.8%
ABC KIDS/ ABC COMEDY 3.2% 7TWO 2.5% GO! 4.6% 10 Bold 3.0% VICELAND 1.3%
ABC ME 0.6% 7mate 5.7% GEM 3.5% 10 Peach 2.1% Food Net 1.1%
ABC NEWS 1.7% 7flix 3.8% 9Life 2.2%     NITV 0.1%
    7Food 0.8%         SBS World Movies 1.9%
TOTAL 15.9%   31.2%   28.2%   15.4%   9.3%


ABC Seven Nine 10 SBS
ABC 10.4% 7 18.0% 9 16.8% 10  5.7% SBS One 5.0%
ABC KIDS/ ABC COMEDY 4.4% 7TWO 4.3% GO! 4.3% 10 Bold 3.3% VICELAND 2.7%
ABC ME 0.6% 7mate 4.9% GEM 5.1% 10 Peach 2.2% Food Net 1.5%
ABC NEWS 1.9% 7flix 3.5% 9Life 2.8%     NITV 0.3%
    7Food 0.7%         SBS World Movies 1.4%
TOTAL 17.3%   31.5%   29.1%   11.2%   10.9%


ABC Seven Nine 10 SBS
ABC 7.7% 7 15.2% 9 38.8% 10  5.7% SBS One 5.0%
ABC KIDS/ ABC COMEDY 2.0% 7TWO 2.9% GO! 2.9% 10 Bold 3.1% VICELAND 1.3%
ABC ME 0.6% 7mate 3.2% GEM 2.3% 10 Peach 1.6% Food Net 1.0%
ABC NEWS 1.0% 7flix 1.3% 9Life 2.4%     NITV 0.2%
    7Food 0.7%         SBS World Movies 1.0%
TOTAL 11.3%   23.3%   46.4%   10.4%   8.6%


ABC Seven Nine 10 SBS
ABC 13.3% 7 16.4% 9 22.6% 10  16.0% SBS One 4.9%
ABC KIDS/ ABC COMEDY 1.8% 7TWO 3.3% GO! 2.5% 10 Bold 3.3% VICELAND 1.0%
ABC ME 0.5% 7mate 3.9% GEM 2.9% 10 Peach 1.8% Food Net 1.1%
ABC NEWS 1.0% 7flix 1.3% 9Life 1.3%     NITV 0.1%
    7Food 0.6%         SBS World Movies 0.5%
TOTAL 16.5%   25.5%   29.3%   21.1%   7.6%


ABC Seven Affiliates Nine Affiliates 10 Affiliates SBS
ABC 11.8% 7 18.3% 9 17.5% WIN 12.9% SBS One 3.6%
ABC KIDS/ ABC COMEDY 1.9% 7TWO 4.2% GO! 4.2% WIN Bold 4.0% VICELAND 1.2%
ABC ME 1.2% 7mate 4.8% GEM 4.8% WIN Peach 2.2% Food Net 1.3%
ABC NEWS 0.9% 7flix (Excl. Tas/WA) 1.6% 9Life 1.5% Sky News  on WIN 1.5% NITV 0.1%
    7food (QLD only) 0.1%            
TOTAL 15.8%   29.1%   28.1%   20.7%   6.3%


88.1% 11.9%
All People Rankings

Friday Top 10

  1. Seven News Seven 875,000
  2. Seven News / Today Tonight Seven 812,000
  3. Nine News 6:30 Nine 782,000
  4. Nine News Nine 747,000
  5. A Current Affair Nine 590,000
  6. ABC News ABC 565,000
  7. The Chase Australia Seven 528,000
  8. Better Homes And Gardens Seven 512,000
  9. Gardening Australia ABC 436,000
  10. RBT Nine 405,000


Saturday Top 10

  1. Seven News Seven 790,000
  2. Nine News Saturday Nine 660,000
  3. ABC News ABC 624,000
  4. Star Wars: The Phantom Menace Nine 323,000
  5. M Harry Potter And The Chamber Of Secrets Seven 313,000
  6. Getaway Nine 296,000
  7. Deep Water ABC 286,000
  8. Weekend Sunrise Seven 268,000
  9. Poldark ABC 260,000
  10. Border Security Australia’s Front Line (R) Seven 246,000


Sunday Top 10

  1. NRL Grand Final Day Match Nine 1,866,000
  2. NRL Grand Final Day Presentation Nine 1,084,000
  3. NRL Grand Final Day Entertainment Nine 939,000
  4. Nine News Sunday Nine 864,000
  5. Seven News Seven 853,000
  6. ABC News Sunday ABC 508,000
  7. The Real Dirty Dancing Seven 499,000
  8. Sunday Night Seven 472,000
  9. Grand Designs: The Street ABC 378,000
  10. NRL Grand Final Day Women’s NRL Nine 284,000
Monday FTA
  1. The Block Nine 979,000
  2. Seven News / Today Tonight Seven 958,000
  3. Nine News 6:30 Nine 936,000
  4. Seven News Seven 933,000
  5. The Masked Singer Australia Reveal 10 880,000
  6. Nine News Nine 867,000
  7. Have You Been Paying Attention? 10 823,000
  8. A Current Affair Nine 766,000
  9. The Masked Singer Australia  10700,000
  10. Home And Away Seven 638,000
  11. ABC News ABC 635,000
  12. 7.30 ABC 573,000
  13. Australian Story ABC 559,000
  14. Four Corners ABC 542,000
  15. The Real Dirty Dancing Final Performance Seven 528,000
  16. The Chase Australia Seven 524,000
  17. Love Island Australia Launch Nine 494,000
  18. The Real Dirty Dancing Final Seven 493,000
  19. Media Watch ABC 468,000
  20. The Project 7pm 10 458,000
Monday Multichannel
  1. Enemy Of The State PM 7mate 132,000
  2. NCIS (R) 10 Bold 130,000
  3. Doc Martin PM 7TWO 118,000
  4. Bondi Rescue Ep 2 (R) 10 Bold 117,000
  5. Bluey ABCKIDS/COMEDY 114,000
  6. Foyle’s War PM 7TWO 112,000
  7. Play School Nursery Rhyme News Time ABCKIDS/COMEDY 111,000
  8. Floogals ABCKIDS/COMEDY 108,000
  9. Midsomer Murders 9Gem 107,000
  10. Nella The Princess Knight PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 106,000
  11. Law & Order: SVU Ep 2 (R) 10 Bold 106,000
  12. Spicks And Specks ABCKIDS/COMEDY 105,000
  13. PJ Masks AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 101,000
  14. New Tricks  9Gem 100,000
  15. Neighbours 10 Peach 99,000
  16. Pawn Stars PM 7mate 97,000
  17. Thomas And Friends: Big World! Big Adventures! ABCKIDS/COMEDY 97,000
  18. The Numtums Shorts PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 95,000
  19. Luo Bao Bei ABCKIDS/COMEDY 95,000
  20. Law & Order: SVU (R) 10 Bold 94,000
Monday Subscription TV
  1. The Bolt Report Sky News Live 65,000
  2. Paul Murray Live Sky News Live 52,000
  3. Credlin Sky News Live 47,000
  4. Live: NRL 360 FOX LEAGUE 44,000
  5. Highway Patrol FOX8 42,000
  6. Kenny On Media Sky News Live 42,000
  7. Blue Bloods TVH!TS 40,000
  8. Family Guy FOX8 38,000
  9. Highway Patrol FOX8 36,000
  10. Midsomer Murders UKTV 36,000
  11. Test Ind V Rsa Mini: 1st Test Day 5 FOX CRICKET 34,000
  12. Border Security: Australia’s Front Line FOX8 33,000
  13. Live: Women’s Odi: Aus V Sri Game 2 FOX CRICKET 33,000
  14. The Simpsons FOX8 32,000
  15. Border Security: International FOX8 32,000
  16. Blue Bloods TVH!TS 32,000
  17. Selling Houses Australia Lifestyle Channel 32,000
  18. The Simpsons FOX8 31,000
  19. Police Ten 7 FOX8 30,000
  20. PML Later Sky News Live 30,000

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

ACMA probes Bruce Gordon's Prime Media holdings

The media regulator has launched an investigation into the complex set of holdings WIN Corp owner Bruce Gordon has had in rival regional television broadcaster Prime Media, reports The AFR’s Max Mason.

Sources told The Australian Financial Review the Australian Communications and Media Authority has been examining Gordon’s interests in Prime for the past month after the corporate regulator forced the media mogul to sell down his economic holdings to less than 20 per cent.

The investigation by ACMA continues but sources indicated that the media regulator would be likely to conclude Gordon did not intentionally exceed the maximum 15 per cent of voting shares he is allowed to own in Prime.

Gordon is prevented from owning more than 15 per cent of Prime securities by the rule barring an owner holding more than one television licence in a market.

[Read the original]

Terry McCrann: Nine finally gets the 1989 media mix

The Nine Entertainment – interesting word that – group now has the first fully owned media network we have ever seen in Australia spanning newspapers, television and radio in the two biggest cities of Sydney and Melbourne and also mostly (TV and radio) in the third biggest, Brisbane, writes News Corp’s Terry McCrann.

The combined Nine FTA-TV, print media and radio empire now has a total value of $3.2 billion – barely half what James Packer got just for the TV all of 13 years ago.

Further, around $1.1 billion of that comes from Nine’s 60 per cent stake in the Domain real estate print and mostly digital advertising business. “Everything else” is worth barely $2 billion – almost exactly as much as the whole Domain is worth.

Now, almost exactly the same has happened at News Corp, the Murdoch-controlled “other” major media group and of course publisher of this paper.

Today, News Corp is valued at $12 billion.

Nearly $9 billion of that comes from its 62 per cent stake in REA (Real Estate Dot Com), which has a market value of $14 billion – easily the biggest of any media/advertising company in Australia.

So everything else in News Corp adds up to $3 billion.

Thank goodness then, for the other of the two most spectacular and spectacularly timed deals: the decision by Rupert Murdoch’s eldest son and successor as executive chairman and CEO of Fox (the US electronic media business) and as co-chairman of News Corp to buy into REA when he, Lachlan, was running the Australian arm in the late 1990s in his mid-20s.

At that time REA was at death’s door; Murdoch secured a 40 per cent stake for just $2.5 million.

And the rest would be multi-billion dollar history.

Now, the News Corp stake in REA is up to nearly $9 billion, and three-quarters of the total group value.

Nine is, despite its 50-50 takeover of Fairfax (Fairfax shareholders got half the shares in the new company), and corporate board and management clearly believe it is, in the “entertainment” business not the news business.

Certainly, the two Melbourne and Sydney broadloids have – with the odd exception – long since ceased being in the news business.

[Read the original]

News Brands

Reuters creates events business for news with B2B company buyout

Thomson Reuters, the company behind news agency Reuters, has bought a global B2B events company which it has rebranded as Reuters Events and will operate under its news division, reports Press Gazette.

FC Business Intelligence delivers conferences and exhibitions to the energy, insurance, travel and technology sectors, among others. It is now part of Reuters News.

Reuters president Michael Friedenberg said: “This acquisition allows us to combine Reuters globally trusted brand, scale and editorial excellence with FCBI’s deep expertise in highly specialised events for professionals.”

[Read the original]

How The Financial Times is pursuing subscribers still in their teens

The Financial Times is expanding how it appeals to school students by creating more focused content and, in a novel twist, releasing a board game.

One of the outcomes is that by instilling regular reading habits in younger people, they go on to subscribe to one of the FT’s university student packages, reports DigiDay.

The FT Schools initiative, where students between 16 and 19 years old can create online accounts giving them access to the FT’s content, began in the U.K. in June 2017 and expanded globally in January 2018. FT Schools now has more than 40,000 student accounts at 2,800 schools in 101 countries. As part of the program, students receive weekly emails featuring content tied to their specific fields of study, whether that’s economics, politics or the environment. It also shares video content and more tactical help with articles about how to get ahead in exams and interviews.

[Read the original]


As Nine completes Macquarie takeover, 2GB now dominates 4BC

The final local weekday program produced by 4BC for 4BC went to air just over two weeks ago as Mark Braybrook hosted his final drive program before the end of survey six. Brisbane media had speculated 2GB’s Ben Fordham would be heard in the market very soon.

Before that though was two weeks of Karl Stefanovic who hosted the 2GB/4BC drive survey break fortnight.

Braybrook no longer identifies himself as a 4BC commentator on his social media handles, it simply says “gone fishing”.

Fordham’s first show into Brisbane and other markets was on Monday. Listeners have been getting more detail about what’s happening in the sunshine state. Sydney listeners had an update on the Queensland premier’s foot injury on Monday afternoon, with the Sydney-based host explaining her trip to Roma this week will now be filled by another Queensland member of her party.

After launching his media career at Sydney’s Radio 2UE and Sky News Australia, Ben Fordham joined the Nine Network in 1999 and has enjoyed lengthy stints with A Current Affair and the Today show, and more recently as co-host of the ratings blockbuster Ninja Warrior.

Forham also won the prestigious Walkley Award for his coverage of the 1997 Thredbo landslide.

Ben Fordham said: “There’s some exciting stuff happening in Queensland and I’m really keen to get amongst it all. We’ll be talking about drought, population, mining, public transport, the justice system, sport and anything else that’s on your mind. I’ve been campaigning for some time to move an NRL grand final to Suncorp Stadium so that idea should find some strong support in Brisbane. We’ve also got to make sure this Olympic bid gets across the line for Queensland in 2032. The signs on that are super strong so you can bet the next decade is going to see some dramatic changes. My family has a lot of history in Brisbane, and my uncle David broadcast sport on Channel 7 and Channel 10 here for many years.”

MML Chief Executive Officer Adam Lang said: “I am delighted to be announcing Ben Fordham Live will now be heard Monday to Friday on 4BC. Ben’s passion for live, engaging radio ensures Brisbane listeners will be receiving the latest news and traffic, as well as having the opportunity to discuss a whole range of Brisbane and national issues every day on the open line. Ben’s credibility with his audience and his ability to deliver a result for advertisers make him an excellent choice to join the line-up at 4BC.”


Robert Moran: Lindsay Lohan deserves a Logie for The Masked Singer

There’s one main reason why TV competition The Masked Singer is a primetime success, pulling in more than a million viewers an episode for Network 10 – and that reason is Lindsay Lohan, writes The Sydney Morning Herald’s Robert Moran.

But those people are not me and they’re wrong. The show’s drawcard is clearly Lohan, Hollywood royalty among a judging panel of local whatever (Dave Hughes‘ sultry locks excepted).

It’s perhaps predictable that Lohan’s pre-season appointment was met with such hostility, criticised as “stunt casting” for the sake of making headlines. Aussies hate when Americans get our TV jobs, echoes of cultural cringe and industry inferiority again brought to the fore. Imagine complaining about Lohan, though? What a sad existence.

For all the online mockery of Lohan’s stilted reactions when faced with a de-masked Gretel Killeen or Nikki Webster, she’s been a good sport embracing the “celebrities” on display, warmly praising their onstage efforts and blindly accepting our insistence she’s not being trolled – like that time Hughesy earnestly explained to her that Sheppard‘s Geronimo is a “famous song in Australia”. It’s no Sorrento Moon but fine, sure Hughesy.

[Read the original]

Darren McMullen is the voice behind the prawn on The Masked Singer

Actor and TV presenter Darren McMullen has apologised to family and friends for keeping secrets, reports News Corp’s Jonathon Moran.

The 37-year-old was tonight revealed as the man behind the prawn costume on hit Channel 10 show, The Masked Singer.

The former host of The Voice, who is currently playing the character of Findlay Knock in Nine’s SeaChange, also suggested a career on Broadway could be his next move.

“It has been really tough (keeping the secret), especially with family and friends,” McMullen told Confidential.

“They all knew I was back working on something but the fact that I wouldn’t tell them what annoyed the hell out of them. Hopefully they’ll understand why I couldn’t say anything now and they will start talking to me again.”

McMullen is the fifth celebrity outed on the reality show, following the departures of former Big Brother host Gretel Killeen, rugby and rugby league great Wendell Sailor, performer Nikki Webster and cricketer Brett Lee.

[Read the original]

Sports Media

NRL grand final: TV audiences down, streaming up

Despite the NRL grand final’s historically-low TV audience, streaming on 9Now was up in comparison to last year. The broadcaster claims Sunday’s clash was streamed 413,000 times, an increase of 113 per cent in comparison to 2018, reports The Age’s Broede Carmody.

Nine’s director of sport, Tom Malone, said the broadcaster was very happy with the weekend’s figures.

“At its peak, more than 3 million Australians were glued to their TV screens for last night’s thrilling NRL Grand Final,” he said. “As viewer consumption habits evolve, the numbers streaming the match on 9Now went gangbusters. More than 15 million minutes of NRL content was streamed on 9Now yesterday, with overall digital viewing up by 81 per cent on last year, further vindicating Nine’s strategy to acquire all rights across all platforms so we can reach viewers anywhere, anytime.”

[Read the original]

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