OUT BOX OF THE
The latest television news from Kylie Miller and Darren Devlyn
Holden far from idle
AS IAN ‘‘Dicko’’ Dickson, Marcia Hines and Kyle Sandilands gear for another season of Australian Idol, Mark Holden is spending time with his family and returning to his legal studies. Sandilands says he and Hines had a ‘‘sneaky dinner’’ with Holden (left) when they were in Melbourne for the Idol auditions. He says Holden told them of his plans to see out his days in the industry as a music lawyer. ‘‘There’s more to Mark than what comes across on television,’’ Sandilands says. ‘‘He’s a brilliant operator. People just see him as the ‘Goonie goo-goo’ guy, but he’s a great producer— you cannot get better than him.’’ Sandilands says Holden would have to lose the ‘‘Kermit suits’’ for court.
Heelers to hookers
BLUE Heelers star Samantha Tolj (right) returns to the small screen in series two of Satisfaction, which started shooting in Melbourne this week. Tolj sheds her uniform to play a potential love interest to Peta Sergeant’s sex worker, Heather. Rod Mullinar, Tony Poli and Paul Denny also join the cast in recurring roles.
THE Nine Network has picked up Wipeout, a format perhaps best described as a cross between Gladiators (without the gladiators) and Fear Factor (without the nasty bits) in which individuals complete physical challenges on the world’s largest obstacle course. Australia’s Southern Star Endemol will produce the eight-episode series, to be filmed late this year on location at the world’s largest obstacle course— a custom-built set in Argentina. Nine also has the US version and will be watching closely when it premieres in the US next week. The format has been sold to broadcasters in Germany, Belgium, Greece, Sweden, Norway and Denmark, with more deals pending.
Hopper crashes in
HOLLYWOOD veteran Dennis Hopper will star in a 13-part television adaptation of the 2005 Academy Award winner Crash, about racial tensions in Los Angeles. Paul Haggis, who directed and co-wrote the film, is executive producer on the series for Starz cable channel, with original cast member Don Cheadle joining him as a producer. Cheadle and other cast members are expected to reprise their roles.
More hot chicks in the city
DARREN Star’s Cashmere Mafia failed to find the success of his previous hit as a producer, Sex and the City, for Channel 9 and has now been cancelled in the US. Channel 7 is having its shot at another three-hotpowerful-womenconquering-New-York drama with Lipstick Jungle, from Sex and the City author Candace Bushnell. Lipstick Jungle stars Brooke Shields (left) as movie executive Wendy Healy, who is juggling a high-powered career with her family and equally glamorous friends, played by Kim Raver and Lindsay Price. It premieres on June 29 at 9.30pm, after Private Practice, the Grey’s Anatomy spin-off centred on Kate Walsh’s character, Dr Addison Montgomery. PRODUCTION has begun on Seven’s new Jennifer Hawkins- hosted series Make Me a Supermodel, with auditions being held at the Novotel in Melbourne on July 5 and Frankston Arts Centre on July 6. About 8000 potential models— male and female— have downloaded application forms to compete in the high-end format, which differs from Australia’s Next Top Model by allowing viewers to vote.
Dutch show given Aussie touch
SYDNEY producer Greg Quail will make an Australian version of Game Planets, a Dutch ‘‘virtual’’ game show for children aged eight to 12. Contestants have an oxygen tank that they fill by answering questions correctly, allowing them to fly capsules through space, landing on planets where they play a variety of games. Quail’s credits include Saving Kids and Saving Babies for Channel 10 and Real Top Guns for SBS. He is now working on a series Find My Family for Channel 7.
Dirt wiped, but Cox still busy
COURTENEY Cox is developing new projects with husband David Arquette after the cancellation of their offbeat comedy series Dirt. The comedy, which starred Cox as a feisty magazine editor, was axed after two series.
SBS’s Tour de force
SBS Television promises more live coverage than ever of the Tour de France (above) this year, which kicks off at 10pm on Saturday July 5 and continues throughout the month. Commentators Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwen will be joined by former professional cyclist David McKenzie, who will offer expert cycling analysis, and Michael Tomalaris as host. SBS will screen updates and highlights packages daily at 7.15am and 6pm.