Buyers eye Southern Star

Southern Star chief executive Hugh Marks says his company is “working hard to come up with something new for TEN in the slot Big Brother used to fill.”

In 2009 TEN will need to find at least one new ‘tentpole’ programme for Sunday evenings and 7pm weeknights. It faces a mid year void in between The Biggest Loser and Australian Idol.

His comments come amid concerns that Southern Star’s revenue are expected to drop by around 20% following the axing of Big Brother. Despite speculation Nine might have been interested in the franchise, no clear buyer has emerged for the show.

Meanwhile FremantleMedia is understood to have sought clearance from the competition regulator for buying Southern Star, a division of Fairfax Media. The BBC and WIN Television are also believed to be interested, according to the Australian Financial Review.

Marks said yesterday that FremantleMedia was one of ‘several interested parties conducting due diligence‚Ķbut there is no favoured buyer.’

Earlier this year FremantleMedia bid $8.3m for a stake in Beyond.

Source: Reuters, AFR


  1. Scott-
    As someone who watches shows such as Big Brother, I think you are far from correct.
    (1) The contestants of Big Brother, apart from a few years, have been far from homogeneous… And very few would been defined as Teens. Also, 55c isn’t that much of an inflated cost for an sms… the show needs to make a profit.

    (2) Ammm…. big brother didn’t have a Judging Panel… but the shows that do, I hardly doubt any network in Australia would be able to pick up high-grade, permanent celebrities. But none the less, not all reality Television shows contain the same judging style.

    (3) I agree that some shows take too long to reach their goal, but not all reality television show will draw out their programs.

    (4) Millions of Australians actually liking what they see.

  2. “Scott” covered all the bases with his3 point plan.

    Maybe Southern Cross Endemol could do “the Mole’, “Survivor or Amazing Race.

    Nope- forget it, none involve the money grabbing scheme calling PHONE voting.

    The original Big Brother premise will still work – just cut out the stunts.
    Bar one, ask for folks to sign up for BB, then when they pass – sent them to Darwin, Kangaroo Island, King island, Rottnest Island or Nar Nar Goon instead of the riches (and adulation) they expect on Gold Coast.

  3. Buy Southern Star, Win. Show PBL, that your not a one trick pony. I honestly think next year, Win should launch it’s own SD to compete against 9’s using the Crawfords program library as a background. They would have to negotiate the deal of the century with a pay-tv operator like Foxtel to get the real “4th” network onboard in the eastern capitals.

  4. Sadly, whatever show they develop will feature the following key atrocities:-

    (1) Endless exhortations to vote for or against bland, homogenous teen contestants on inflated-cost phone lines.

    (2) D-grade unemployable musicians, actors, network contracted ‘stars’ to sit on a judging panel of those contestents.

    (3) A format that merits thirty minutes of content per week drawn out beyond any level of rationality to at least 4.5 to 6 hours per week.

    (4) Millions of Australians praying for better locally produced television content.

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