“The way of the future”: Renee Bargh on becoming a Stanbassador

renee bargh stanbassador

• “I’ve seen the level of professionalism, the standard feels very global here”

As correspondent and weekend co-host of Extra, entertainment reporter Renee Bargh has interviewed countless A-listers and Hollywood superstars, including: Brad Pitt, John Travolta, Bon Jovi, Nicole Kidman, Johnny Depp, Cameron Diaz and Usher.

Landing back in Australia after ten years in Los Angeles, the Emmy Award-winning TV host has recently joined Stan as the platform’s newest Stanbassador. 

Mediaweek spoke to Bargh about her plans as a Stanbassador, her time on Dancing with the Stars, and how Australia compares to Hollywood.

Becoming a Stanbassador

Bargh says that what drew her to the role was the opportunity to hit the ground running when she returned to Australia.

“I feel like it was the most perfect fit for me after living in LA and living, breathing the entertainment world in Hollywood for 10 years. Stan just felt like the perfect place to go coming to Australia. They, to me, epitomise the way of the future when it comes to how we consume television, entertainment, and movies. 

“What I really love about them is the Stan Original shows and the amount of local production that they do. I think that’s what’s so incredible, especially in the last year. Not only do we have these incredible stars coming over to Australia to shoot projects with Stan, but also how many people they’re employing within the entertainment industry is really, really exciting. I just felt like they were on the forefront, so what better company to work with?”

Stan’s Upcoming Slate

Part of becoming a Stanbassador means that Bargh gets a front row seat to Stan’s upcoming slate. She says that there are a number of shows she’s got on her watch list.

“The Original productions are really exciting to me. They have The Tourist which is currently in production in South Australia with Jamie Dornan who we love, so I’m very excited he is on our soil.

“There’s Wolf Like Me with Isla Fisher and Josh Gad, which will be awesome because they’re amazing.

Wolf Like Me

Wolf Like Me producer Bruna Papandrea, and stars Isla Fisher and Josh Gad

“There’s also Girls5Eva, which looks so fun, it’s produced by Tina Fey. I was in a girl group – a failed girl group – so I can really relate to that show and that concept. 

“And the Stan Original, RuPaul’s Drag Race Down Under is going to be amazing. It’s so incredible, so funny, the Aussie queens are amazing. I just think that was genius, I’m so glad they did an Aussie version of that show.”

Drag Race Down Under

Bargh has already got her first Stanbassador role under her belt, attending the premiere of RuPaul’s Drag Race Down Under at the Sydney Opera House. 

“It was magic, honestly. It was so exciting. I realised I hadn’t been on a red carpet for over a year – and yes, this was a blue carpet – but it was major. It was so big, and so exciting, and it was just so great to be able to interview people in person, to get all dressed up. And to have a premiere at the Opera House, that’s incredible. It’s probably been 12 years or something since I worked a premiere at the Opera House, so that’s massive.

“The drag queens were amazing. I just loved the glitter and the glitz and the glam, and how much effort they put into it, and how much fun they were. They were so vibrant, I keep saying that I would interview drag queens for the rest of my life, it’s so much fun.”

Drag Race Down Under

The queens of RuPaul’s Drag Race Down Under

Looking Ahead

Bargh says that she’s hoping to use her new role to bring the stars of the screen directly to Australians.

“I’m hoping to bring my strengths as an entertainment reporter and an interviewer, which is obviously what I’ve done for the last ten years, to this role. So interviewing as much of the Stan talent as I can, giving people a behind the scenes look, getting on set with a lot of the local productions, and just connecting the Aussie fans to their favourite celebrities.”

Dancing with the Stars

Earlier this year Bargh appeared as a wildcard entry on Seven’s Dancing With The Stars: All Stars. She says that being a wildcard was a unique position to be in, but one that she enjoyed.

“I don’t know what I was thinking. I’ve always wanted to do that show, and then I can’t believe that I signed on on an All-Stars season. Actually, I didn’t really know that was the case until I’d already jumped on board, and then I was like ‘wait, you’re telling me that everybody bar three other people have done the show, and half the people have won the show? The level is going to be so high, what am I thinking? I have no chance here!’. 

“I definitely felt like a wild card in every sense of the word, but it did push me to work a lot harder. I felt like I had a lot to prove just to be there.

“As much as I joke and wish I hadn’t been surrounded by a bunch of winners, it did definitely push me to work harder.”

dancing with the stars 2021

The cast of Dancing With The Stars: All Stars

From Los Angeles to Australia

After ten years in Hollywood, Bargh says that working in Australia is a different experience – but that doesn’t mean that Australia comes up short.

“There are obviously a lot more people [In LA]. Every week there would be multiple red carpets and multiple junkets, there’s so much going on. So I think the difference is probably the pace, more than anything. It’s just that it’s very fast, and there’s a lot happening all the time.

“Aside from that – especially working with Stan – I’ve seen the level of professionalism, the standard feels very global here. Aussie production is incredibly high in value, and Aussies in general are really respected over there. In terms of that it doesn’t really feel any different, the standard and the level feels on par.”

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