TEN: “We are disappointed.”

Channel TEN is licking its wounds over the loss of its hit comedy show Thank God You’re Here to Seven.

It had been trying to lure the successful show back to screen for the better part of a year. At the end of 2007 it was is in discussions with Working Dog for a “bigger and better” Thank God You’re Here or 2008. But it never eventuated.

Instead the team comprising Rob Sitch, Tom Gleisner, Santo Cilauro, Jane Kennedy and Michael Hirsch returned to the ABC for The Hollowmen. They wrote, directed, produced and performed in two series.

That gave them a break from Thank God You’re Here. Now, without any clarity on whether there is a third series of The Hollowmen for the ABC, they have signed with Seven for a fourth series of their improvisation hit.

Had the show proceeded on TEN there would have been significant changes. It is unlikely Shane Bourne would have been able to return as host. His affiliation with Seven would have been problematic for all.

It would have also been looking for a new studio. The space it once called home at Global Studios in Nunawading, is now a permanent Neighbours studio.

Late yesterday, TEN Programming Manager David Mott, was clearly disappointed by the move, especially considering the network had forged such a strong bond with Working Dog. Their backing of the format, helped Working Dog to license international versions of the series, including one in the US.

“The collaboration between Network TEN and Working Dog has produced some ground-breaking Australian television such as The Panel, The Panel Xmas Wrap and Russell Coight’s All Aussie Adventures.

“Network TEN also took a leap of faith with Working Dog to develop what was then just an idea into Thank God You’re Here, which became an Australian success on TEN in 2006.

We are disappointed that we couldn’t settle on a mutually rewarding position in our recent negotiations.”

Shows changing networks isn’t unusual, but it is rare. Most recently, Seven also snatched Kath & Kim from the ABC. Neighbours and Rove previously appeared on other networks, but weren’t usurped until they had ended their deals.

Sadly without its most popular comedy series, it seems TEN will be the ones left to improvise…

26 Comments:

  1. 1.4 mil !!!! i guess they’ve used the gladiators budget which was a similar price.

    in that case imo it is money much better spent, i never minded gladiators as a time passing show but not at that price.

    surprised 9 dropped out at 1mil (assuming what newtaste said is correct) i thought they would have wanted it the most. if it had to move from 10 i would much rather see it on 7 just so that shane bourne could host. he is great, really adds a good energy to the show.

  2. I think I just heard KKR faint. $1.4mil, in a economy turning pearshaped, is a bit extravagent, but then again, Seven may be trying to squeeze Canwest out of Australia, then buy Ten (but keep under separate ownership to the main 7 network, to keep regulators happy) for a princely sum.

  3. Entertainment reporter Peter Ford said on 2UE that Nine pulled out of negotiations for THYG at $1 million per episode, that Ten pulled out at $1.1 million and that Seven are paying $1.4 million. Very expensive television.

  4. Now Ten no longer has TGYH, they will have to throw a lot of money at Hamish and Andy to come up with a decent comedy program. Hamish will probably be too busy to appear on TGYH or Spicks and Specks as often.

    Maybe Ten should try to “steal” Spicks and Specks from Aunty?

  5. I’ve got my fingers crossed that they can bring back Hamish Blake, Shaun Micallef and Julia Zemiro. I’m seriously imagining them scraping in ex-Home & Away stars and Sunrise personalities *shudders* oh the horror!

  6. To naname: Really? I swear Season 1 and 2 were ABC, and Ch 7 bought Season 3, under the impression that they would produce more. Oh well. Stranger things have happened.

  7. Why can’t actors/personalities such as Shane Bourne appear on 2 networks? It’s really petty to have contracts that prevent them. Just look at Letterman to see how this rarely occurs in the USA.

  8. Disappointed? They should be ashamed of themselves, they spent big bucks on that stupid 24/7 Sports Channel and now they’ve lost one of their highest top rating shows. Shame on you TEN.

  9. Great shame for Ten. “…couldn’t settle on a mutually rewarding position” sounds like
    Seven offered more than Ten could possibly afford. Business is business, I know, but I reckon both Seven and Working Dog lose a few karma points if that’s the way it went down.

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