OUT BOX OF THE
Wendy offers some Logies luck
WHEN Wendy Harmer heard her friend Gretel Killeen would be flying solo as Logies host— the same role Harmer took on back in 2002— she rang to wish her luck. Harmer has well and truly put her hosting attempt and any negativity surrounding the event behind her and is now focusing on other challenges, including her Pearlie book series. It’s being adapted for TV as an animated series and is well into production. ‘‘The series will air this year in Canada and here in Australia on Channel 10,’’ Harmer says.
Experts to anchor Ashes
STUART MacGill (left) will host SBS’s Ashes coverage, starting in July. Joining him will be Greg Matthews and Damien Martyn. The station’s broadcast will include morning updates, daily highlights and live coverage from 7.30pm for each of the five Tests. Coverage will be available in HD. SBS managing director Shaun Brown says: ‘‘SBS was the only Australian free-to-air broadcaster who came to the table in 2005 to ensure one of the greatest Ashes series was broadcast live and free to air to Australian audiences. After that success and SBS’s strengthened partnership with the England and Wales Cricket Board, we renewed our commitment to the Ashes by securing this year’s free-to-air rights. This means every ball, every run and every wicket will be shown live and free to air on SBS1.’’
Crime king’s evil web
PRODUCTION is set to begin on a documentary about controversial crime boss Abe Saffron. Mr Sin— The Abe Saffron Story, is being written and directed by Hugh Piper. The doco synopsis explains: ‘‘This is a story of bribery, blackmail and corruption that examines how, like a spider in his web, Australia’s enigmatic crime boss Abe Saffron remained untouchable for so long.’’
Aussie Gear on the road again
SBS hopes viewers will get behind the second season of its motoring show Top Gear. Series one was criticised for falling short of the standard set by the British original, but the cast of Top Gear Australia is having fun filming the new season. The first episode of season two promises to deliver laughs as the hosts race from Federation Square to Portsea.
Ruby can’t shake acting bug
MTV presenter Ruby Rose (left) has won the Favourite Female Personality title at pay-TV’s ASTRA Awards. Though she’s happy focusing on interviewing musicians, Rose says she wouldn’t mind acting. She dropped out of an acting course at the Victorian College of the Arts after getting the MTV role, but the 23-year-old says she would like to pick up where she left off. ‘‘I really love acting and I was halfway through my course when I got this gig so I couldn’t finish it,’’ she says. ‘‘If the right role came along I would definitely love to do some acting.’’
Dance tour steppin’ out
TICKETS have been selling well for the live tour of So You Think You Can Dance Australia, prompting organisers to announce new shows for the tour. Third concerts have been added for Melbourne and Sydney. The new Melbourne show is July 8 (evening) at Rod Laver Arena. Tickets went on sale on Monday. The live-tour concept is proving so successful that there will be 18 shows nationally. The season’s top 10 dancers will be back together in mid-June to start rehearsals for the concert tour.
Escapee had Buckley’s chance
ABC1 has commissioned production of a dramatised documentary about escaped convict William Buckley. The doco will star Jean-Marc Russ as Buckley, Chris Haywood (left) as John Morgan, Richie Akers as James Gunn, Dennis Coard as John Fawkner and Richard Cawthorne as Alex Thompson. The Reincarnations of William Buckley will be presented by Melbourne University historian Dr Michael Cathcart. David Tournier will appear in the film as the Wathaurong culture and language expert, and indigenous cast will be drawn from Victoria and other parts of Australia. The doco will tell how Buckley, a 23-year-old convict escapee, lived with Aboriginal people in Victoria for 32 years in the early 1800s. Buckley’s life was saved by an Aboriginal tribe in 1803 and they made him one of their own. Buckley’s life with Aborigines of the Port Phillip Bay area is the most detailed record we have of indigenous society before it was changed by white culture.