ABC has axed consumer affairs show The Checkout due to budget cuts and high production costs.
It comes after 6 seasons for the Giant Dwarf-produced show, just days after its nomination in Logies Most Popular Lifestyle Program.
A statement from Executive Producer Julian Morrow indicated, “It’s true The Checkout’s combination of thorough research and creative ways to present consumer information means it’s not as low cost as some other ABC programs. But the cost of making the program has not increased for two years, and the next series would have cost the same or less.
“The Checkout was also slated for production in the current financial year, before the Federal Government’s freeze on ABC funding in July 2019.”
Updated: A statement from ABC:
Please attribute the following statement to an ABC spokesman: “The ABC has decided not to commission a seventh series of The Checkout for 2018-19 at this time. The programming slate regularly changes for any number of reasons, including the need to strike a balance between new and returning programs for audiences. Putting The Checkout on hiatus does not preclude the program from returning in the future. The ABC is proud of its long association with The Checkout and production company Giant Dwarf, with which it has worked on other programs, such as The Letdown and Growing Up Gracefully.”
In 2015 then-ABC Programmer Brendan Dahill told TV Tonight, “When you look at what boxes does a public service show need to tick − inform, educate and entertain − I think The Checkout does all of those in spades.
“When we talked about investigative current affairs meets consumerism, only the ABC can make that show. In terms of distinctiveness, it ticks that box as well, and it comes from a great team who have the ABC DNA woven through them. They know our audience and our audience know them so Checkout for me is a brilliant, iconic ABC show.”