Cover: Luke Perry (Beverly Hills 90210)
Game to be mad
The Nine Network is looking to make a local adaptation of the hit English game show Don’t Forget Your Toothbrush. The show gives studio audience members the chance to fly out to an exotic destination straight after the show. Our House co-host Graeme ‘Shirley’ Strachan is believed to have been considered for the hosting job.
‘A scandalous waste of public money’
The controversy happening behind-the-scenes in the production of The Damnation Of Harvey McHugh seems far from over. Cast member Philip Quast, who plays the part of the Minister, has described the show as “a scandalous waste of public money”, in particular having to re-shoot the first six episodes completed. The outburst has prompted series writer John Mistro to respond that his experience with the show was so traumatic, he won’t work in television in the near future. Producer Sue Masters concedes she had an uphill battle to boost morale when she was hired to replace the show’s first producer, Denny Lawrence. “It was difficult for me coming into a situation where the previous producer was fired,” she said. “I felt very sad for Denny that his version of this show was not what the ABC wanted.”
Talking manure with Mike Moore!
Burke’s Backyard‘s recent coup in scoring Elle Macpherson for a guest appearance has faded into insignificance with news that host and producer Don Burke has snapped up Frontline‘s Mike Moore (Rob Sitch) as guest celebrity gardener. “We regard Mike Moore (pictured) as one the great icons of Australian television, and of course to nail him was, well, the office celebrated for a week. It was huge,” Burke told TV Week. “Naturally the problem when you do Mike Moore is that there’s nowhere else to go, nobody else to do. I don’t know… we’ll just have to settle for Ray (Martin) or Jana (Wendt) now.” Former ABC reporter Moore will take Burke’s Backyard through his lofty rooftop garden that acts as his haven from the hectic world of current affairs. “You’re watching the tragedies and disasters of the world go through the autocue machine every night, and to come up here and get back to nature a little is my piece heaven,” Moore told TV Week. Moore added that his move from ABC to Frontline hasn’t changed his focus from serious current affairs. “I haven’t changed and our commitment to the stories hasn’t changed — as long as they involve diets and cellulite, we’ll do any story. People say we’re not political. Well, wait until they see the story on Melrose Place that we’ve done. It’s a showstopper.” Meanwhile, the celebrity-smitten Burke will return the favour by making a guest appearance in an episode of Frontline.
Ronnie hopes to Strike It Lucky
Former ’60s rock star Ronnie Burns (pictured) said it was a tough decision to either stay with Ten‘s Healthy Wealthy And Wise or go to Nine to host a new game show, Strike It Lucky. “It was the most difficult time for me. The only person I could discuss it with was my wife, Maggie. I didn’t want any of it to leak out,” he told TV Week. “I was not disgruntled at Healthy Wealthy And Wise, so when this offer came along, I had to think about it long and hard. I’m now confident that I made the right choice.” Strike It Lucky takes on the 5.00pm timeslot, placing it up against Seven‘s Family Feud. “We’re not producing this show just to fill a space, we’re out to win the timeslot.”
- The Seven Network seems to have lost interest in the new drama series Over The Hill, starring Georgie Parker and Nicholas Eadie. The network is believed to be holding off screening the series until the non-ratings period.
- Law Of The Land star Shane Connor is the first cast signing for Seven‘s new series, Fire. Producers are down to a short list of six names for the show’s female lead. The 13-part series is to be filmed in Queensland.
- Sitcom Newlyweds has been renewed for a fifth series. All the original cast, including Annie Jones, Chris Gabardi, Cathy Godbold and Sandy Gore, will return. Filming starts in September.
- Nine‘s Jim Waley has just filmed a guest appearance for ABC‘s current affairs satire, Frontline. There is talk that Today‘s Elizabeth Hayes is also to be involved in the series in the future. The D Generation had previously hoped to get Hayes on to The Late Show to sing the Isaac Hayes hit Shaft as one of their mistaken identity musical numbers, but it fell through.
- Marcus Graham has signed to star in the Halifax fp series of telemovies, co-starring with Rebecca Gibney.
Lawrie Masterson: The View From Here
“In television terms, David Jason comes close to being a national treasure in the UK. The toughest and possibly most cynical press in the world seems to adore and, more importantly, any new show he does these days has a happy knack of attracting 20 million or so viewers.”
Program Highlights (Melbourne, July 16-22):
Saturday: In A Country Practice (7.30pm, Ten), unknown to his friends and the residents of Wandin Valley, Danny (Vince Colosimo) has been seeing a psychiatrist over problems from an accident 12 months ago. As the FIFA World Cup draws to a close, the 1986 Official FIFA World Cup Film screens (7.30pm, SBS) ahead of the Play-Off for Third (5am Sunday, SBS).
Sunday: Sunday AFL includes Brisbane Bears versus Richmond (2pm, Seven), live from Brisbane, and Adelaide versus West Coast Eagles (5.30pm, Seven), live from Adelaide. Sunday night movies are Are You Lonesome Tonight? (Seven), Mo’ Money (Nine) and Breathing Lessons (Ten). The FIFA World Cup Final and Closing Ceremony is live from the US (4.35am Monday, SBS).
Monday: With the FIFA World Cup now concluded, SBS launched a revamped evening schedule — starting with debut of Irish drama series Glenroe (7pm), the series return of magazine series The Big Byte (7.30pm) and the launch of news analysis program News Extra With Paul Murphy (8pm). In Talk To The Animals (7.30pm, Seven), Jane Holmes and a group of school children visit a farm in central Victoria, Kelly Pummeroy goes diving with whale sharks off the coast of Western Australia, and Pamela Graham watches a dentist working on a gorilla at Melbourne Zoo.
Tuesday: In Home And Away (7pm, Seven), Shane (Dieter Brummer) fears everyone is against his marriage to Angel (Melissa George). In GP (8.30pm, ABC), the very single Julie (Denise Roberts) is swept off her feet by a chance meeting with her local postman, Glen (Ken Radley). In Law Of The Land (9.30pm, Nine), Hamilton (Wyn Roberts) calls a town meeting to discuss the recycling plant, but it degenerates into a bun fight.
Wednesday: In Home And Away (7pm, Seven), Angel (Melissa George) accepts Shane’s (Dieter Brummer) marriage proposal. The Movie Show (7.30pm, SBS) returns. Jo Bailey hosts the series return of Looking Good (8pm, Nine)
Thursday: In Getaway (7.30pm, Nine), Lochie Daddo visits Queensland’s islands, Rebecca Harris discovers the untouched beauty of Samoa, and David Reyne tests eco tours and how to get the best out of them. Beyond 2000 (7.30pm, Ten) looks at the underwater PC. Nicholas Hammond, Harry Cripps and Elise McCredie guest star in The Damnation Of Harvey McHugh (8.30pm, ABC).
Friday: In Rex Hunt’s The Great Outdoors (7.30pm, Seven), guest reporter Melissa George goes behind the scenes at Warner Bros Movie World on the Gold Coast, Ernie Dingo (pictured) practices Tai Chi, and Bridget Adams learns driving techniques at the Westec Rally School in Perth. Friday night AFL features Adelaide Crows versus Sydney Swans (8.30pm, Seven), live from Adelaide.
Source: TV Week (Melbourne edition), incorporating TV Times and TV Guide. 16 July 1994. Southdown Press.
The Damnation Of Harvey McHugh was a terrific and yet sublime show with a stella cast. I wasn’t aware of what happened behind the scenes, but the end product was good.