Exclusive: Brian Naylor will be inducted into the TV Week Logies Hall of Fame.
The late newsreader reigned in the Melbourne television landscape for nearly three decades and hosted Carols by Candlelight to a national audience for ten years.
TV Tonight can reveal his induction will be formally announced by TV Week magazine tomorrow.
Naylor’s posthumous induction follows an outpouring of emotion from the industry after he tragically perished in the Black Saturday bushfires alongside his beloved wife Moiree. At the time many noted his success, dignity and professionalism.
At the time Nine News presenter Peter Hitchener said everybody respected Naylor, regardless of network rivalries, and describing him as warm and gracious.
“The mark he made on our town and our state and our news in Victoria is quite incredible,” he said.
TEN News presenter Mal Walden said, “He was the best communicator of the lot – a born communicator. That’s why he rose so far. We were good friends despite the fact we were competitors.”
Michael Venus, director of news at Channel Nine in Melbourne, said, “Brian Naylor was the consummate professional – he’s the best I’ve ever seen and I doubt in my lifetime if I’ll ever see anyone better.”
Naylor first entered television in 1958 after just two years in radio. He retired in 1998.
Logies host Bert Newton, remembers his Nine colleague, whom he first met at Channel Seven.
“We met at the start of television,” he tells TV Week. “Brian had come to Channel Seven in Melbourne to do a program called Swallows Juniors -it was basically an early version of Young Talent Time. He also worked on The Late Show with me and we hit it off.”
Newton also recalls Naylor’s dominance of the Melbourne news landscape after he was poached from Seven by Nine.
“He actually made the Channel Nine News in Melbourne number one,” he recalls, “and it stayed number one for all of the time he was at the desk.”
Nationally Naylor is best remembered for hosting the annual Carols by Candlelight, prior to Ray Martin.
His induction into the Hall of Fame follows the first-ever leak of a short-list of contenders. The Australian recently reported a list which included Brian Henderson, Ian Ross, George Negus, Ian Murray, Ray Meagher, Ken Sutcliffe, Maggie Tabberer and Prisoner.
This year is the only year in which Naylor can posthumously be inducted into the Hall of Fame, which would have no doubt influenced the voting jury.
The TV Week Logie Awards will be presented at Crown Casino on May 2nd.