ASTRA Awards: Random Acts of Carpet-ness

On the Red Carpet with the Cloudstreet cast, Natalie Bassingthwaighte, Rodger Corser, Charlotte Dawson, Donna Hay & more.

I’ve finally gotten around to transcribing last week’s Red Carpet interviews at the 10th Annual ASTRA Awards.

It was a chilly night at Sydney Theatre as Subscription TV personalities faced the media throng.

Here are some of their thoughts….

Petra Buchanan, CEO ASTRA on the next 12 months for the industry:
“In the last 12 months we’ve seen quantum leaps in terms of the evolution of what Subscription Television is, and even in terms of yesterday with the potential takeover bid. So I think we’ll see continued change, continued growth and innovation -which is one of the cornerstones of Subscription Television. Making sure those investments in technology are there so that we continue to meet consumer expectations and continue to drive it forward.”

On the question of televising the Awards:

“We’re on Bigpond this year and On Demand on Foxtel as well. We’ve looked at it in different forms and fashion but what’s most important to us is a night of celebration and it’s about everyone coming together. Whether that’s reflected in terms of television or not, we’ll continue to look at that.”

Spirited‘s Rodger Corser on filming Puberty Blues:
“I was on the beach today with Dan Wyllie doing a scene and got out of the 70s running gear and threw the suit on and got out of Cronulla and into the city.

“It’s pretty cruisy for the oldies on the set, Dan, Susie, Claudia and Stephen. It’s about the kids. It’s Puberty Blues, not middle aged blues.

“My character gets some dramatic stuff which is good. He’s not the nicest character!”

Bryce Holdaway & Veronica Morgan on Location, Location, Location, Australia starting next month:

“You’ll see the ups and downs of property hunting.

“It was a bit of a change from the last series which was 2 properties per couple whereas this is one property per couple. The emotional level stays quite high throughout.

“The first episode is based in Sydney but we do all go all around the country, although this time we didn’t get to Western Australia.”

Natalie Bassingthwaite on CBeebies Story Time:
“I was instantly attracted to the idea of Story Time because I have a daughter and we’ve been reading to her since she was about 4 months old. We’ve been reading Little Red Riding Hood and she’s in a bouncer, but it was amazing how engaged she was between the book and my husband. It was wonderful. For children, for so many reasons, it’s important to be reading to them daily. So I was excited to be reading for many kids not just my own daughter.”

Adam Brand on Story Time:
“It was far more exciting than I thought it would be. They sit you in a huge red chair and surround you with toys, and give you props. But it’s not just telling a story, you put your own personality and character into the story. I found that probably more entertaining than the kids found it!”

Natalie Bassingthwaite on The X Factor:
“We’ve done all the auditions and we start the live shows in September. There’s quite a few things that will be different this year. The talent is crazy. But as everyone always says, sometimes you worry are we going to run out of talent? But there’s no way. There’s so much talent in this country.

“The format will be a little different at times. It will be bigger and better. It’s always bigger and better than last time isn’t it?”

Photo: Laura Dundovic from Dancing in the Dark

Kerry Fox on the hardest part of making Cloudstreet:
“Questioning myself as a mother and what that means. I’m a better mother as a result.”

Hugo Johnstone-Burt on Cloudstreet and Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries:
“I’ve been really lucky to come across these roles and to be right for them. I think the only 2 good auditions that I have actually nailed in my entire life, and I can say this honestly were Cloudstreet and Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries.

“I’d love to do another series (of Miss Fisher). It’s such a fun drama. And I love being down in Melbourne.”

Charlotte Dawson on Celebrity Apprentice:
“I have a Subscription TV audience but I haven’t been on Free to Air prime time for many years so it was a whole new audience.

“I’ve been finishing my book so that’s done and I’m getting ready to launch that at the end of September.”

Luke and Wyatt on Camp Orange and their nomination as Best Presenter:
“Having Jennette (McCurdy) was great fun. Because it was Girls vs Boys it was great to have a really strong female there.

“It was good because she was actually competitive with the girls and we actually wanted the boys to win, so we got quite involved.”

“We’re up against professional, proper people like Sarah Murdoch and Rove McManus and Andrew Winter. I think it’s a misprint, but we’re gonna run with it.”

The bos actually won their category.

Donna Hay on being a reluctant TV presenter:
“It was all hard. I’m so used to being on the other side of the camera that it took a lot of months to shift my head into presenter-mode.

“LifeStyle Channel asked me for 12 years before I finally said yes. They were fine with me doing a cooking show, and just cooking. I felt like it was a time in my career I could step out and do the show. I was comfortable with where the magazine was, where the books were. Everything was tracking really well. So I could leave the office for 9 whole weeks to make the show.”

Peter Maddison on Grand Designs Australia:
“Season Three is in production and goes to air about October.

“Last season, coincidentally was about natural disasters. We had 4 or 5 houses that dealt with the drought, bushfire, flooding, cyclone. What we’re looking at in Season Three is the way people build with different materials. Today I was doing an adobe house, a Mexican desert / Santa Fe style, with wood shavings, clay. We’re doing grand earth, steel frame, mud brick, earth cupboard house. And I’m loving getting my hands dirty. That’s where I’m most comfortable. I throw on the overalls and interact. I should have been a builder I reckon.”

FOX Sports CEO Patrick Delany on News Limited’s interest:
“For us it’s business as usual. Because the shareholders change doesn’t mean the operational business changes. But it’s good to be in demand, I’ve gotta say that.

“James Packer might have sold out too early if we win the award tonight!”

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