Third time’s the charm: The triumphant return of Australia’s Got Talent

Australia's Got Talent

Fremantle Australia’s Digby Mitchell on hitting new heights with season 10

After the last two attempts at getting Australia’s Got Talent on to screens were quashed by Covid, the show is finally back bigger and better than ever.

With new judges, new talent, and a whole new set of thrills, Australia’s Got Talent will be back on Seven and 7Plus from 7pm Sunday, October 9.

Mediaweek spoke to Digby Mitchell, supervising executive producer at Fremantle Australia about putting the latest season together and why audiences have stuck with the Got Talent format for so long.

Digby Mitchell Australia's Got Talent

Digby Mitchell

Getting this season of Australia’s Got Talent off the ground proved to be more difficult than first expected, with covid shutting the show down – twice. 

It was a slog, it’s been over three years of work to get this ready,” says Mitchell. “After the 2019 season, we went on the road to do the original casting call for this show and find talent – a pandemic and two shutdowns later, here we are delivering the show!”

The cast that the team found while out on the road isn’t exactly the same as the cast they’ve got taking to the stage in 2022, but Mitchell says that there were some plus sides to the extra time.

“There are some people that were no longer available, but there were some people who were suddenly available. That was the one silver lining of the pandemic – all of these artists who are touring the world and usually busy with gigs suddenly had a lot of free time and were interested in being on the show. The cast did change over the three attempts to make the show, but I feel like we were really lucky in the end because we’ve got the best cast that we’ve ever had.

“We had three years to cast the show, and casting the show is a real challenge. We’re very proud of the people who we’ve got on the show this year.”

Taking their seats on Australia’s Got Talent judging panel are comedian and author David Walliams; actor and radio host Kate Ritchie; multi-platinum selling recording artist and star of Britain’s Got Talent Alesha Dixon; and actor and entertainer Shane Jacobson, who is making his return to the show.

“They were all really fantastic,” says Mitchell. “David and Alesha are pros, they’ve been doing this for years – they know the show and they know the format really well. Kate had been a fan of the show for a long time, and the timing was finally right for her to step in and do it. We were really excited to have Kate as part of the program. Shane’s an old hand, he’s done one season with us back in 2019, so it was great to have to be working with him again. 

“They all brought a different perspective to it. It’s good to have old hands, and it’s good to have new people who have never seen anything like this before. They all brought their own point of view, and they were they’re a pleasure to work with.”

The Got Talent format has been entertaining audiences globally for over 5 years, and was named the world’s most successful reality TV format ever by Guinness World Records in 2014. For Mitchell, the key to the longevity of the show is the surprises that keep the audience coming back.

“You just don’t know what’s coming. One minute you’ve got little girls dancing ballet, and the next minute you’ve got sword swallowers and comedians. It’s just such a mixed bag of talent, you never know what’s around the corner. I think that excitement and the unknown keeps people engaged.”

Australia's Got Talent

As for what makes the local version of the global juggernaut stand out, Mitchell points to its appeal to the uniqueness of the Australian market.

“Australians like seeing Australians giving it a go, and that’s what we do. We’ve got professionals who travel the world doing their thing, but we’ve also got people who’ve just been rehearsing in their bedrooms and they want to give this a crack. I think that ‘I’m giving it a go’ mentality is really entertaining for Australian viewers. 

“I also think Australians like the outrageousness of the show. It’s partly a comedy show when you’ve got people like Shane and David on the judging panel. It’s a show that doesn’t take itself too seriously, and I think that also appeals to the Australian audience.”

When asked what audiences can expect from this season of Australia’s Got Talent, Mitchell says there will be “more variety, more laughs, and more unexpected moments.”

“You really don’t know what’s coming next on this show, and I think that is where the excitement comes from. We were doing things outside this year, we’ve got a motocross stunt team – the scale of the show has gotten bigger. It’s the best acts from around the world and around the country doing their thing on the biggest stage in the country.”

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