Thursday September 12, 2019

PC1 Healthy Her Column
Podcast Week

• Home and Away, Podcast Pilots, Danny Frawley, Healthy Mummy

Home and Away launches official access all areas podcast

Seven has dived into the podcast pool with the official Home and Away podcast. The “access all areas” series is hosted by former cast member Jason Smith (Robbie Hunter, 2003-2006).

Each week, Smith and his guests are promising to discuss the storylines, characters and history of the Australian series, as well as offering behind-the-scenes insight into the making of the show.

The premiere episode explores the importance of family in Summer Bay and features Seven’s head of drama and Home and Away executive producer Julie McGauran and series script executive Louise Bowes.

Episode two continues the family theme with special guests Georgie Parker and Lukas Radovich, who play Roo Stewart and Ryder Jackson, daughter and grandson of Alf Stewart (Ray Meagher).

On the launch of the podcast, Julie McGauran said; “We wanted to extend the Home and Away experience for our audience. By including members of the production team and cast, we’re giving listeners different perspectives about how we make the show and tell stories. Jason’s insight, from working both in front of and behind the camera, has made for some very interesting and entertaining conversations with guests.”

The podcast is a Seven Studios Production in partnership with Acast.

Listen to the Home and Away podcast here.

Australia’s finest make comedy podcast pilots

Australia’s top satirists are teaming up to produce and release a pilot week of daily news-based comedy podcasts from September 19 to 22, with the hope of launching the format daily in 2020.

Mark Humphries (The Feed, ABC’s 7.30), Dan Ilic (A Rational Fear), Greta Lee Jackson (Tonightly with Tom Ballard) and special guest The Chaser’s Chris Taylor are among those joining showrunner/producer Dylan Behan (The Chaser, Tonightly) to present a week of daily pilot episodes under the banner of his podcast News Fighters from September 19 – 22, 2019.

“There’s currently four daily news podcasts being made in Australia, but no damn funny ones!” said producer Dylan Behan. “So I thought: let’s do a pilot week of comedy podcasts with different hilarious hosts every day in a shameless attempt to get a benevolent media organisation to fund us next year. Also doing a pilot week worked well for Channel 10… right?”

Behan said expect irreverent analysis, intelligent piss-takes and a heavy dose of who-the-f**k knows what from the team he has assembled.

Podcast Pilot Week schedule:

Thursday September 19: Mark Humphries (ABC’s 7.30, SBS’s The Feed)
Friday September 20: Jake Stone (lead singer of Bluejuice) with special guest Chris Taylor (of The Chaser).
Saturday September 21: Greta Lee Jackson (Tonightly with Tom Ballard, Skit Box)
Sunday September 22: Dan Ilic (A Rational Fear, Hungry Beast, Can of Worms)

The one-off episodes will be released nightly from September 19 to 22on all major podcast apps and at

The writing team includes a mix of veterans and newcomers including Michael Chamberlin (The Weekly), Dave Bloustein (Good News Week), Lauren Bonner (Tonightly) and Rodney Todd (Kebab Tonight, Tonightly).

When published, listen to Podcast Pilot Week here.

The Healthy Mummy’s Gets Chatty podcast

The global Sydney-based Healthy Mummy empire has released as eight-episode podcast series, Gets Chatty, to keep mums motivated, inspired and on track to live a healthier life.

The episodes cover all areas around mums’ health, well-being and weight loss.

Other discussions include how the Healthy Mummy business started to women’s health issues such as PCOS, how to meal prep, male fertility, how to feed fussy eaters and how busy mums can stay motivated

Founder of The Healthy Mummy Rhian Allen steers the podcasts with the help of The Healthy Mummy nutritionist Cheree Sheldon along with other guests including doctors, fitness trainers, mental health professionals, and real-life stories from mums in The Healthy Mummy community.

Listen to Get Chatty here.
Listen to Mediaweek’s Healthy Mummy podcast with Rhian Allen here.

Live event special for SMH’s Please Explain

Last week The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age podcast Please Explain recorded a special episode in front of a live audience at the Sydney Opera House as part of the Antidote Festival with guests David Crowe, Shane Wright and Jacqueline Maley who joined host Tory Maguire to dissect the first 100 days of an Scott Morrison government many thought would never exist.

Maguire is the national editor of The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age. She has held senior roles at a number of major Australian mastheads and was most recently editor-in-chief of HuffPost Australia for two-and-a-half years.

Listen to Please Explain here.

Forbes Street Studios open night

In partnership with podcast studio ILKI, Universal Music is opening its studio facility doors on September 25 to show people the studios, share some tips from a #1 podcaster and talk about ILKI’s new ILKI-CAST podcasting course.

On the night guests will hear from professional podcaster Dan McHugh (Maddie, Mysterious Universe, Next Generation Innovators) about what it takes to make a successful podcast.

There will also be a tour of the podcast facilities, information about the ILKI-CAST course and a Q&A session.

Learn more about ILKI here.
Book a free spot at the open night here.

Danny Frawley’s final interview published

Danny Frawley bravely shared the story of his battle with depression after Richmond sacking on the Herald Sun podcast series Sacked: What Happens when an AFL coach loses his job?

Writing in the paper this week, Herald Sun journalists Glenn McFarlane and Jon Ralph said:

We never envisaged the hour-long chat would serve as Danny’s last extended interview about his career and life.

The fact it was special had nothing to do with us and everything to do with him.

He was as engaging and entertaining as ever.

He detailed everything from the car rides home to Ballarat with Tony Lockett and Greg Burns in his St Kilda playing days, to the ingenious way he used the Punt Road chicken-poo incident to cultivate his roses.

It was a privilege to sit and listen to his stories, for he had that natural storytelling gene that can likely be traced back to his Irish ancestry.

Listen to the Sacked podcast here.

Another podcast that is essential listening for people to get an insight into Frawley’s media career is this week’s Sounding Board podcast from Craig Hutchison and Damian Barrett.

Hutchy was Frawley’s employer at Crocmedia while Barrett is a long-time colleague and close friend.

Listen to The Sounding Board here.
Also read Damian Barrett’s piece about Frawley and his media career here.

Itch cast
Itch: ABC Commercial’s partnership with the British radio legend

• From award-winning producers Komixx Entertainment

ABC Commercial is returning to Cannes with a new slate of comedy, factual, lifestyle and children’s titles. Top of the 2019 children’s slate and new to market is Itch (HD 10 x 24’), a high-octane, fast-paced action-adventure for primary to early secondary school children, based on the best-selling children’s books by Simon Mayo.

Mayo is a revered British author and broadcaster who spent 18 years with the BBC including long runs hosting the BBC1 breakfast show and then other time slots on radio in mornings and drive.

From award-winning producers Komixx Entertainment (The Kissing Booth), Itch explores the nature of good and evil and in doing so, champions intelligence, knowledge, courage, friendship, working together and growing up. This new series chronicles the adventures of Itchingham Lofte, a science-obsessed teenager who has the unusual hobby of collecting the elements of the periodic table. When he discovers a powerful new element, Itch is forced to go on the run to protect it from a sinister organisation.

ABC Commercial will launch Itch to market at MIPJunior on Saturday, October 12 with a sneak peek screening followed by a Q & A session. Panelists are: 

Amanda Morrison, Managing Director of Komixx Australia, Itch Producer and Global Head of Production, Komixx Entertainment Group  
Melanie Halsall, Komixx Head of Development and Writer/Producer of Itch
Jessica Ellis, ABC Commercial Head of Content Sales and Distribution
Simon Mayo, Author of the Itch series of novels and Broadcaster
Shana Levine, Senior Production Investment Manager Screen Australia

The panel will be discussing their successful cross-border collaboration. With stunning set locations and attractive co-production opportunities they will also explore what is currently driving the vibrant Australian production industry, why it is a great place to produce television, and how to leverage global partnerships to create content that travels.

The ABC’s Jessica Ellis said “The ABC is the most popular broadcaster of children’s programs in the highly competitive Australian environment, ABC Commercial is thrilled to be launching this first-class content at MIPJunior. We have built an excellent campaign around Itch and are confident it will resonate strongly with buyers in the international market place”. 

Ellis added “ABC Commercial has been working hard on expanding our portfolio of children’s and young adult content, the distribution approach will also be presented in the Itch panel discussion.”

When TV and radio broadcaster and author Simon Mayo wrote a short story for his 10-year-old son in 2012, he never imagined that it would become part of a successful chain of best-selling novels in the UK, let alone a TV series set halfway across the world in a coastal town on the southern edge of Western Australia. 

“We felt the Great Southern landscape of regional Western Australia was quite similar to the rugged coastline of Cornwall in the UK, where the ‘Itch’ novels are set,” explained Komixx MD and Itch Producer, Amanda Morrison.  “Both locations share stunning natural vistas and provide dramatic, picturesque backdrops, so, given those similarities and the universality of Itch’s themes, moving the TV series to Australia was not such a giant leap.

“Itch is a fantastic story over three books with a dedicated, enthusiastic readership and we believe that the combination of interesting characters, science, environmentalism, adventure and intrigue makes for a great TV series,” said Melanie Halsall, Komixx Head of Development and Writer/Producer of Itch.

Itch is a Komixx Entertainment Production in association with the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, Screen Australia, Screenwest and Western Australia Regional Film Fund. Based on the best-selling book by Simon Mayo the screenplay is written by Melanie Halsall, Dan Berlinka, Ron Elliott, Heather Wilson, Jessica Brookman and Roger Monk.  

Produced by Amanda Morrison, Tania Chambers and Melanie Halsall.  

Executive Producers for ABC are Jan Stradling and Libbie Doherty.

Nielsen August: towers above its online news competitors

• In second place the ABC has managed to close the gap a little

The August Digital Content Ratings data from Nielsen shows continues to lead in the news category, albeit with a smaller audience. In July, Nielsen reported the audience was 10.05m, that dropped to 9.40m in the August data.

In second place the ABC has managed to close the gap a little on the traditional leader with 810,000 users between the ABC and In the July data, the gap between first and second was 1.43m.

The top five remained unchanged in the August Nielsen numbers reporting on the size of the audiences visiting Australia’s biggest digital news publishers.

The next three places on the chart belong to Nine, The Sydney Morning Herald and 7News. And like all of the top five, these publishers saw their numbers down month-on-month. The biggest falls were at and Nine.

The whole top 10 in fact held the same rankings they had a month ago. Of the publishers listed from #6 to #10, all but Daily Mail Australia recorded audience growth month-on-month. The UK import saw its audience slip from 4.28m in July to 3.70m in August.

I am Roxy
Pilot Week dashboard: Will Roxy Jacenko be a reality TV star?

Network 10 launched its second Pilot Week programming initiative on Sunday night, September 8.

The programming team have explained in the past it is not all about the overnight ratings numbers.

But if it were, there would be another new leader.

The Tuesday night screening of Part Time Private Eyes got a better audience than those watching Sydney’s Crazy Rich Asians on Sunday night.

But the Wednesday night screening of I Am Roxy has set a new high for 2019 with 399,000 watching in metro markets.

That is up 24% on the Pilot Week average of the first two episodes and it is the most-watched Pilot Episode program from either year with just one show left to screen.

Mediaweek is charting the 2019 performance of the Pilot Week programs here after each episode screens.

I Am Roxy

Produced by Matchbox Pictures and Two Basic Scoops Media. Matchbox Pictures executive producer Debbie Byrne. Two Basic Scoops Media executive Producer Michael Wipfli. Network 10 executive producer Ciaran Flannery.

Ratings: National 530,000 (Metro 399,000 Regional 131,000)

Part Time Private Eyes
Produced by CJZ. CJZ executive producers Toni Malone and Nick Murray. Network 10 executive producer Paul Leadon.

Overnight ratings
Ratings: National 458,000 (Metro 344,000 Regional 114,000)

Sydney’s Crazy Rich Asians
Produced by Screentime, a Banijay Group company. Screentime executive producer Johnny Lowry. Network 10 executive producer Paul Leadon.

Ratings: National 254,000 (Metro 175,000 Regional 78,000)

Here is a reminder of how the shows screened during Pilot Week in 2018 performed:

The adjusted metro numbers after all eight programs screened:

Kinne Tonight
Kinne Productions & Big Yellow Taxi Productions

Trial By Kyle

Drunk History
Eureka Productions

Skit Happens

Lune Media

Studio Bento


Bring Back…Saturday Night
Roving Enterprises

Kyle and Jackie O giveaway
Kyle & Jackie O massive giveaway: every caller wins world trip

For once, Friday the 13th can bring you some luck. KIIS 1065’s Kyle & Jackie O have announced their next historic radio giveaway.

The dynamic duo are offering every listener who calls into the show a phenomenal holiday prize, in their ‘You Get A Big World Holiday!’ promotion. 

Kyle and Jackie O YOU GET A HOLIDAY promotion

Following their greatly successful ‘You Get A Car’, ‘You Get A Diamond’, ‘You Get $5,000 Cash’ and ‘You Get A Gay Wedding’ promotions that have given away hundreds of thousands of dollars in prizes, every single Kyle & Jackie O show caller who makes it on air this Friday September 13th from 6am will score themselves a holiday to amazing destinations such as Los Angeles, Bali, Thailand, Singapore, Vietnam, New Zealand, Fiji, China, Vanuatu, New Caledonia, Hawaii, Hayman Island and more.

“KIIS has become famous for Kyle & Jackie O’s ‘You Get A’ promotions. We absolutely love creating big event radio that creates buzz amongst the audience!” said ARN’s Head of Content – KIIS Sydney and Melbourne, Derek Bargwanna. 

TV Ratings Analysis: September 11

• Roxy haters ready? Pilot Week success indicates series pending
• Nine narrowly in front with The Block up week-on-week

Wednesday Week 37 2019

By James Manning

• Seven News 968,000/965,000
• Nine News 858,000/884,000
• ABC News 614,000
• 7.30 544,000
• The Project 249,000/449,000
• 10 News First 372,000
• The Drum 154,000
• SBS World News 135,000

Breakfast TV

• Sunrise 276,000
• Today 207,000


For the third successive night this week Home and Away was again hovering well above 600,000 with 655,000 last night.

Celebrity Chaser featured a mixed bunch including Merrick Watts and Cal Wilson with 499,000 after 511,000 a week ago.

A Britain’s Got Talent special then did 334,000, which wasn’t bad for over two hours.


A Current Affair dropped under 800,000 for the first time this week with 711,000 watching.

The Block’s master ensuite week reveals are just one episode away with 833,000 watching the work continue. That comes after 750,000 last week when that episode was up against the cricket.

Many viewers have checked out of Grand Hotel with two episodes last night on 298,000 and then 196,000.


The Project dipped again down to 449,000.

The Bachelor was on 701,000 after 674,000 a week ago.

That wasn’t a bad lead-in for the Pilot Week episode of I Am Roxy. The audience of 399,000 was the best so far from the three programs screened. Co-executive producer Wippa was right when he told us Debbie Byrne did a great job on the series. Roxy is a perfect subject for reality exploitation and there was plenty of content last night. One piece they might have explored more was why one punter at a Roxy speaking gig wanted his money back before it had even started. The audience of 399,000 means 10 will seriously consider asking Two Basic Scoops Media and Matchbox Pictures for more.

But giving I Am Roxy an 8.40pm slot came at a cost. The penultimate episode of My Life Is Murder was pushed back a little to 9.10pm and suffered accordingly. The audience was 242,000 after 343,000 a week ago.


• Mad As Hell performed best of the midweek comedies with 636,000.
• Hard Quiz was on 605,000 and Utopia did 595,000.
• Diary Of An Uber Driver was on 217,000.


A special night of programming to note the 9/11 anniversary saw 9/11: Escape From The Towers on 260,000 followed by the launch of The Looming Tower drama on 149,000.

Week 37 TV: Wednesday
ABC Seven Nine 10 SBS
ABC 12.8% 7 19.0% 9 19.2% 10  13.3% SBS One 5.4%
ABC KIDS/ ABC COMEDY 2.1% 7TWO 3.3% GO! 2.4% 10 Bold 4.7% VICELAND 1.7%
ABC ME 0.6% 7mate 3.1% GEM 2.3% 10 Peach 2.5% Food Net 1.0%
ABC NEWS 1.6% 7flix 2.0% 9Life 1.8%     NITV 0.1%
    7Food 0.7%         SBS World Movies 0.5%
TOTAL 17.1%   28.1%   25.7%   20.5%   8.7%


ABC Seven Affiliates Nine Affiliates 10 Affiliates SBS
ABC 10.6% 7 21.1% 9 14.8% WIN 10.2% SBS One 4.5%
ABC KIDS/ ABC COMEDY 2.9% 7TWO 4.4% GO! 3.2% WIN Bold 5.0% VICELAND 1.6%
ABC ME 0.7% 7mate 3.7% GEM 4.4% WIN Peach 2.6% Food Net 1.1%
ABC NEWS 1.2% 7flix (Excl. Tas/WA) 2.8% 9Life 2.8% Sky News  on WIN 1.8% NITV 0.1%
    7food (QLD only) 0.7%            
TOTAL 15.4%   32.6%   25.1%   19.6%   7.3%


86.1% 13.9%
  1. Seven News Seven 968,000
  2. Seven News / Today Tonight Seven 965,000
  3. Nine News 6:30 Nine 884,000
  4. Nine News Nine 858,000
  5. The Block Nine 833,000
  6. A Current Affair Nine 711,000
  7. The Bachelor Australia 10 701,000
  8. Home And Away Seven 655,000
  9. Shaun Micallef’s Mad As Hell S10 ABC 636,000
  10. ABC News ABC 614,000
  11. Hard Quiz S4 ABC 605,000
  12. Utopia ABC 595,000
  13. The Chase Australia Seven 550,000
  14. 7.30 ABC 544,000
  15. The Celebrity Chase Seven 499,000
  16. The Project 7pm 10 449,000
  17. Hot Seat Nine 432,000
  18. I Am… Roxy! 10 399,000
  19. 10 News First 10 372,000
  20. Britain’s Got Talent – The Champions Seven 334,000
Demo Top 5

16-39 Top Five

  1. The Bachelor Australia 10 267,000
  2. The Block Nine 199,000
  3. I Am… Roxy! 10 131,000
  4. Utopia ABC 124,000
  5. Nine News 6:30 Nine 118,000


18-49 Top Five

  1. The Bachelor Australia 10 388,000
  2. The Block Nine 357,000
  3. Nine News 6:30 Nine 243,000
  4. Seven News / Today Tonight Seven 212,000
  5. Nine News Nine 209,000


25-54 Top Five

  1. The Block Nine 408,000
  2. The Bachelor Australia 10 392,000
  3. Nine News 6:30 Nine 293,000
  4. Nine News Nine 263,000
  5. Seven News / Today Tonight Seven 258,000


WEDNESDAY Multichannel
  1. NCIS: Los Angeles (R) 10 Bold 179,000
  2. NCIS: Los Angeles Ep 2 (R) 10 Bold 173,000
  3. NCIS (R) 10 Bold 171,000
  4. Bluey AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 161,000
  5. Peppa Pig AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 158,000
  6. Peppa Pig PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 152,000
  7. PJ Masks PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 149,000
  8. Border Security – Australia’s Front Line 7TWO 148,000
  9. Go Jetters ABCKIDS/COMEDY 147,000
  10. Dinosaur Train ABCKIDS/COMEDY 136,000
  11. Floogals ABCKIDS/COMEDY 136,000
  12. Kiri And Lou PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 134,000
  13. Kiddets AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 131,000
  14. Octonauts PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 128,000
  15. Ben And Holly’s Little Kingdom AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 125,000
  16. Play School Art Time PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 123,000
  17. Fireman Sam AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 120,000
  18. Rusty Rivets ABCKIDS/COMEDY 117,000
  19. Bananas In Pyjamas AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 113,000
  20. Olobob Top AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 108,000
  1. Gogglebox Australia Lifestyle Channel 168,000
  2. Grand Designs Australia Lifestyle Channel 74,000
  3. Live: AFL 360 FOX FOOTY 68,000
  4. The Bolt Report Sky News Live 57,000
  5. Richo & Jones Sky News Live 52,000
  6. Ryan’s Mystery Playdate Nick Jr. 46,000
  7. Credlin Sky News Live 46,000
  8. Live: NRL 360 FOX LEAGUE 42,000
  9. Blue Bloods TVH!TS 41,000
  10. Live: FIBA Basketball WC: Qf4 Aus V Cze FOX SPORTS MORE 41,000
  11. Blaze And The Monster Machines Nick Jr. 39,000
  12. Family Guy FOX8 39,000
  13. Grand Designs: The Street Lifestyle Channel 39,000
  14. On The Mark FOX FOOTY 39,000
  15. Family Guy FOX8 38,000
  16. Paw Patrol Nick Jr. 37,000
  17. Paw Patrol Nick Jr. 37,000
  18. Paul Murray Live Sky News Live 37,000
  19. The Simpsons FOX8 37,000
  20. Blaze And The Monster Machines Nick Jr. 36,000

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

Optus CEO Allen Lew not worried about Vodafone-TPG merger

SingTel Optus chief executive Allen Lew says he is not worried that the proposed merger between rival operators Vodafone and TPG Telecom will hurt his company’s position in the mobile market, reports The Sydney Morning Herald’s Ben Weir.

The Australian Competition and Consumer (ACCC) recently blocked the proposed merger between Vodafone Hutchison Australia and TPG. But the matter is before the Federal Court with Vodafone arguing the regulator is wrong in its view the merger would hurt consumers by reducing competition.

“I’m certain the courts will make the right decision for the industry but more importantly for consumers in Australia,” Lew said on the sidelines of an Australian Communications Consumer Action Network (ACCAN) conference in Sydney.

[Read the original]


Australian Women’s Weekly celebrates Women of the Future

The Australian Women’s Weekly and AGL Energy hosted the 7th annual Women of the Future (WoTF) awards ceremony at Bennelong, Sydney Opera House yesterday.

The event celebrates some of the country’s most extraordinary young women who are making a difference. Nominees are entered across three unique categories: Innovation and Technology, Entrepreneur and Business, and Community, Health and Charity.

The luncheon featured a panel discussion between Australian Banking Association chief executive officer, Anna Bligh, TV personality Amanda Keller, journalist Annabel Crabb, the City of Sydney Councillor and former MP for Wentworth Dr Kerryn Phelps, and was hosted by emcee and ABC Melbourne host Virginia Trioli. 

The panel discussed the importance of women’s reproductive rights in Australia, the power of failure and how to overcome imposter syndrome.

Women of the Future Award Winners

• 18-year-old Macinley Butson took home the Innovation and Technology award, thanks to her revolutionary invention SMART Armour that protects breast cancer patients from radiation. 
• Little Dreamers founder, Melbourne’s Madeleine Buchner, took centre stage to pick up the Community Health and Charity award.  Little Dreamers is the only not-for-profit supporting young carers.
• Geelong’s Courtney Holm won the Entrepreneur and Business category for her fashion label, A.BCH that is tackling waste in fashion.

AWW Nicole Byers and winners

AWW editor Nicole Byers with Women of the Future award winners


Seven Studios planning Back to the Rafters for Amazon Prime

Yesterday reports emerged that Seven was in discussions for a revival of Packed to the Rafters.

But TV Tonight reports while that’s indeed true, new episodes are not destined for Seven screens, but to streaming platform Amazon Prime Video.

With a working title of Back to the Rafters, the plan is for Amazon to buy the rights of all previous episodes, with new content featuring the much-loved Rafter clan. It isn’t yet clear how many episodes (or even telemovies?) that might entail should it all fall into place.

Seven Studios, which has previously produced content for Foxtel and Netflix, was this week hinting at lifts in its output under CEO Therese Hegarty. Producing for Amazon would also be a revenue bonanza for new Seven West Media CEO James Warburton.

[Read the original]

Why does 10 bother with Pilot Week when it pays producers?

Flashy gimmick or genuine guideline? A stunt designed to create the illusion of viewer power, or a sampler that alerts a TV network to hot prospects?

Network 10 has unveiled its second annual pilot week, presenting four new productions for our viewing pleasure. The theory is that the pilots that hit a sweet spot with the audience will get the green light for advancement into series, reports The Age’s Debi Enker.

It’s worth noting that some of 10’s more engaging local productions this year – Five Bedrooms, Mr Black, My Life is Murder – didn’t need the platform of pilot week to land commissions. The network simply decided it wanted them and signed on the dotted line.

So why bother with this parade? Maybe it generates some excitement about what’s to come. Perhaps it differentiates 10 from its rivals. It does provide some handy promotional hooks: what will screen? How will it rate? What will be given the go-ahead?

But the basic job of the brains trust at 10 – as with its rivals – is to identify and nurture new talent and ideas in the hope that they will produce popular programs. That’s why they’re paid the big bucks.

[Read the original]

Toni Collette's new Netflix series is unbelievable - and it's true!

The idea of Toni Collette starring in a new series from Erin Brockovich writer Susannah Grant ought to be enough to grab anyone’s attention, writes The Sydney Morning Herald’s Brad Newsome.

The first few harrowing minutes of Unbelieveable should be enough to hold it – and the knowledge that what happens next is based on a true story only makes it all the more gripping.

Those first few minutes take us back to 2008 and a Seattle suburb where troubled teenager Marie Adler (Kaitlyn Dever) is raped in her own apartment by a masked attacker who has every detail planned out. The depiction of the attack itself is elliptical but shocking, and Dever is captivating in the deliberately procedural aftermath. Marie has to relive the attack over and over again, in her statements to a uniformed policeman, to detectives, to hospital staff and – after a battery of medical tests – to the same detectives once more, and then yet again in her own written statement. Incredibly, the detectives promptly seize on inconsistencies between those statements and their own interviews with other people to bully Marie into recanting her story. Then they charge her with making a false report.

[Read the original]

Holly Byrnes: Roxy Jacenko was my secret breast cancer battle life coach

She’s the publicist they can’t keep down, and now with her own reality TV show to shout her successes from the rooftops, writes News Corp national TV editor Holly Byrnes.

But for all the haters who will no doubt come for Roxy Jacenko after the debut of I Am … Roxy during Ten’s pilot week, I won’t be one of them.

Not because I’ve known her for more than a decade, working with the power player over that time and watching as she went from the personal assistant to one of my late, great mentors, fashion designer Mark Keighery, to become by far the best lifestyle publicist in Sydney.

Watching the tide of anger and jealousy flow against her over the years was frustrating for someone who knew those criticising her were only doing so because they didn’t have the smarts or the chutzpah to do half of what she got off her arse and did to make it.

I stand here as a card-carrying member of Team Roxy for the real woman she is and the secret role she’s played in coaching me through the hardest battle of my life: beating breast cancer.

Roxy’s fight with the disease was sadly a very public one, with her diagnosis coming just one week after her husband, Oliver Curtis, was jailed for insider trading.

My C-day came on February 4 this year – International Cancer Day, as luck would have it.

And one of the first people I reached out to for advice and counsel was Roxy, who I know would spare me the pity party and bullsh*t.

At that point, I had not told my family I was sick, scared to send them spiralling down the same path we’d just been on with my eldest sister, Tracey, who had lost her battle a bit over a year before.

I was afraid, of course I was, but Roxy got me three doctors referrals in 30 seconds. No joke.

Her first message set me straight: “Oh Hol – don’t worry, it will be fine – look at me,” she said, from the back of a chauffeur-driven car, after getting off a plane, Roxy-style.

[Read the original]

Warning over Brisbane man’s fake Netflix ‘documentary’

Netflix has warned a viral Facebook event inviting young Brisbane residents to “show us their crazy party side” for a documentary is fake, reports’s Frank Chung.

The post yesterday by a page calling itself “Netflix Australia – Brisbane” attracted more than 6000 comments and was shared nearly 500 times.

“Hey Fortitude Valley Brisbane!” it said.

“We’re on the hunt for people who might like to show us their crazy party side (or main documentary) on camera (anonymously or not) and also have anonymous (no faces, names, voices etc.) chats with us to compile for a Netflix Original Series documentary next year. If this sounds like you or your crew, tag them or message us.”

The post continued, “We want to explore binge drinking, ‘kick ons’, and all the things that come with ‘having a night out’. Please get in touch, we need you! Have a coffee with us and tell us your story! If you can make it, this is the first step: check out the event this Friday (and feel free to bring some friends).”

Netflix declined to provide a statement but said it was aware of the event and confirmed it was “not genuine”.

The “Netflix Australia – Brisbane” page has since renamed itself “Netflix Originals”, while the listing for the event at The Wickham pub has been removed.

[Read the original]

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