Disney gig banks on pranks
Wes Dening is slowly making his mark in the US, writes
IT’S a long way from Dreamworld, on the Gold Coast, to fronting a US TV show, yet former Big Brother housemate Wes Dening has done just that. Dening made the final eight of the reality TV show in 2004 before he was voted out, yet he’s arguably the most successful of any of the human lab rats to appear on the show.
The 29-year-old is the host of the hidden camera prank show Code: 9 on the Disney Channel which will launch today in the US.
Dening says the initial test audience results were strong and there’s every chance the show will be commissioned for a second season.
‘‘We design, build and pull off pranks, from blowing up a golf cart with dad’s golf clubs on the back and sending mum to buy a car only to find out it’s stolen and she’s being blamed with dealing with criminals,’’ Dening says.
‘‘There are six episodes in the first season and we will see how it does.
‘‘They tested the pilot on 2500 kids and it was one of the highest testing pilots for Disney.
‘‘Fingers crossed it will take things to another level.’’
If Code: 9 is renewed it would be a huge break for the LA-based Queenslander who cut his teeth in television on a two-month probation contract with Totally Wild following his Big Brother eviction.
He based himself in the US four years ago after getting offered a role in a travel show that never eventuated.
To make ends meet he hosted dance shows and tried to sell concepts for new television shows.
During a ‘‘pitch’’ meeting with television executives in New York about a concept for one of his shows he got his first break on US TV.
Dening got chatting with the producer of another show while waiting and scored a spot on truTV’s World’s Dumbest, originally known as the
Wes Dening with the Gold Coast’s international DJ hitmakers The Stafford Brothers.