Two stories have emerged in the media today on rival current affairs shows at Seven and Nine: Sunday Night and 60 Minutes.
Yesterday a Seven press release indicated Sunday Night exec producer Steve Taylor had resigned from the show and would be succeeded by former Inside Story producer Hamish Thomson. The release did not indicate why he resigned after only 18 months.
Today the Daily Telegraph references unnamed sources that suggest Taylor was told today he was no longer needed by Seven’s director of news and public affairs, Craig McPherson. Taylor, who is well-regarded within the industry, was promoting the program via his Twitter account as recently as Sunday. Thomson, who left Nine after 22 years in May, is said to have a huge fan in McPherson.
Meanwhile Nine CEO Hugh Marks admits 60 Minutes needs to find “a consistent timeslot” in 2017. This year it has screened anytime between 7pm and 9:45pm.
Nine’s Director of Television, Michael Healy, Managing Director Programming and Production, Andrew Backwell, and Director of News & Current Affairs, Darren Wick, will all have a say.
“There are two schools of thought,” Marks told News Corp. “I do have a view. All I’ll commit to at this stage is that consistency is important.”
In recent weeks 60 Minutes also screened on a Wednesday night, which is one option rumoured to be under consideration.
Nine strategically codes “60 Minutes Late” as a separate OzTAM log to avoid lower averages impacting its annual average.