In an interview with The Australian, McLennan signalled a return to “event” television to counter-act timeshifting.
“The type of shows we’ve been known for of late, like really good solid US dramas and Australian drama, is getting time-shifted,” he said.
“Live sport doesn’t get time-shifted, and we will have a greater focus on news, and big franchises like Australian Idol. That’s why you’re now seeing a strong commitment from advertisers for upcoming programs on TEN like The Bachelor.”
Australian Idol departed our screens in 2009 after seven seasons. at its height it was must-see TV live at the Opera House. Since then The X Factor and The Voice have dominated the singing landscape while TEN’s plans to revive Young Talent Time floundered.
McLennan also indicated the network will aggressively pursue 25-54 year olds, because younger viewers are no longer watching traditional TV in the same way they once used to.
“We will always have the youthfulness of Channel 10 and an attitude that is unique to us, but we’re fair and square going after the 25 to 54-year-old demographic,” he said.
Since taking the helm at TEN, McLennan has seen TEN acquire the Winter Olympics, The Bachelor, and make a $500m bid for cricket rights. TEN is also reworking its breakfast offering under Adam Boland.
In February TEN Programming Chief Beverley McGarvey told TV Tonight,“I think it’s fairly obvious from our crowded schedule that we do miss our Idol days. It was the grandfather of those shows that are doing everywhere right now.
“Idol was such a brand defining show with the Sydney Opera House finales, they were fantastic TV. It was sort of the beginning of Event Television for us.”
TEN is also tipped to announce the return of So You Think You Can Dance.