The first day back on air together for Studio 10‘s Ita Buttrose and Denise Drysdale has prompted some to ask whether a backstage feud is brewing.
TEN has dismissed an article today by News Corp (the same media happily embedded in the South African jungle) as being “deliberately mischievous.”
Today Ita was seated beside Natarsha Belling, but previously had sat beside Drysdale -both usually “job-share” the role on alternate days.
The article quotes unnamed sources that a rift exists, referencing dressing rooms, panel placement and the great “brussel sprout” incident of late last year.
A Network TEN spokesperson told News Corp, “Ita and Denise are consummate professionals and these unsubstantiated allegations are offensive.
“Ita and Denise have the highest respect for one another and thoroughly enjoy working as part of the Studio 10 family together. To suggest otherwise is nonsense and deliberately mischievous.”
Both happily attended last year’s Upfronts as part of the Studio 10 family, although that’s no guarantee of anything in showbiz.
Last year TEN also denied tension around producer Rob McKnight, saying his absence was due to the flu, before he was later sacked and attributing that leave to stress and being “close to a breakdown.”
Such is the backstage fascination in morning TV –Today and Sunrise are subjected to rumours all the time.
A bigger question should be directed towards the show’s ratings which are down across the first 5 weeks of the year, compared to 2017 and 2016.
Official ratings begin next week, so any supposed subtext and ratings pressure may make this one to watch.