OUT BOX OF THE
The latest television news from Kylie Miller and Darren Devlyn
Librarians due for return
CONSTRUCTION has begun on a new studio space for ABC comedy series The Librarians after its previous location was taken over by the Melbourne Theatre Company. Filming starts in January on the second series, which follows the tribulations of stitched-up head librarian Frances O’Brien and the staff of Middleton Interactive Centre. The Librarians was co-written by Robyn Butler (right), who plays O’Brien, and Wayne Hope, who directs and co-stars as her put-upon husband, Terry. Actor Josh Lawson will not return, but his character will not be forgotten as the subject of O’Brien’s romantic fantasy. Lawson has been named as co-host with James Brayshaw of Channel 9’s adaptation of the international game show Wipeout.
Doco looks at virus cancer link
HOWeasy is it to catch cancer? It’s the question asked in a documentary about 16 women who were diagnosed with breast cancer after working at the ABC’s Brisbane headquarters. Produced by Tony Wright and directed by Sonya Pemberton, Catching Cancer follows a team of Australians as they ask whether the cancers could have been caused by a virus, something previously unproven.
ABC picks up pay-TV comedy
PAY-television comedy Chandon Pictures, which also features Josh Lawson (left), has been picked up by the ABC and premieres on January 21. Filming wrapped a couple of weeks ago on a second series, to screen next year on Movie Extra. The series was created by and stars Rob Carlton as the deluded director of a suburban video production company.
Stand-up man in Spain
WOGS out of Work star Simon Palomares returns to the small screen next year in Kill or Die, a documentary that follows him on a quest to his Spanish homeland to care for his ageing father and search for where he belongs. Palomares wrote the film with director David Swann, to screen on SBS next year. Described as a humorous examination of a cross-cultural mid-life crisis, the film follows Palomares as he enters the ‘‘bloody gladiatorial arena’’ of Spanish stand-up comedy where, he argues, he must kill or die trying.
IT WAS quite a family affair on the Tasmanian set of the factual ABC drama The Last Confession of Alexander Pearce, with a healthy dose of Northern Irish ancestry both on and off screen. The factual drama is based on the true story of one-time Van Diemen’s Land convict Alexander Pearce, who survived his escape from the brutal Sarah Island penal colony by cannibalising his fellow escapees. Pearce is played by Northern Irish actor Ciaran McMenimin, who was inspired to become an actor by his Northern Irish co-star Adrian Dunbar ( The Crying Game and My Left Foot). Both actors are from the same part of the country as the drama’s producer and co-writer Nial Fulton, who is married to Dunbar’s niece. The local cast includes Dan Wyllie, Don Hany, Bob Franklin, Chris Heywood and Martin Jacobs. The Last Confessions screens on ABC1 on January 25.
Anyone for tennis?
THE History Channel continues its focus on Australian sport with a two-hour tennis special in the lead up to the Australian Open. Hosted by doubles champ Todd Woodbridge, the special looks at the people and events that shaped the sport in Australia, and interviews with tennis greats including Margaret Court, Pat Cash, Ken Rosewall, Frank Sedgman and Lleyton Hewitt reveal private moments behind some of the big on-court clashes. The Spirit of Australian Sport— Tennis premieres on January 17 at 7.30pm.
Selleck goes to Vegas
EVERYTHING viewers need to know about the global financial crisis will be answered in a documentary series being commissioned by the ABC. Addicted to Money will be made by Perth producers Andrew Ogilvie and Andrea Quesnelle, whose credits include The Hunt for HMAS Sydney. It looks at what caused the meltdown, what lies ahead and how to survive the new economy. TOM Selleck (left) joins the cast of trashy Channel 7 import Las Vegas tonight playing A.J. Cooper, the mysterious new owner of the Montecito. It’s the first ongoing TV role for the moustached actor since his long-running role in 1980s drama Magnum P.I. He replaces veteran James Caan, who bows out of the series.
Time for school
How to survive a recession
TWO new Australian children’s dramas will go into production in the new year, one for the ABC and one for Channel 9. The ABC has commissioned Dance Academy, a children’s series being made with German broadcaster ZDF, about a rural girl who moves to the city to join a dance school. Nine has commissioned Chatroom Chicks, a drama about three girls who study at an international school in Singapore.