Semi-re­luc­tant quiz host

Western Suburbs Weekly - - Health -

SHAUN Mi­callef al­ways thought a quiz show host to be the low­est form of life in tele­vi­sion un­til some­one pointed out to him that Grou­cho Marx did You Bet Your Life.

“I thought if it was good enough for Grou­cho, it was good enough for me,” Mi­callef said.

“I don’t do it so much now but if you watch the early episodes of Talkin’ ‘Bout Your Gen­er­a­tion, I am just do­ing Grou­cho; walk­ing and talk­ing like him. I think I chan­nelled him a bit be­cause it was my way of cop­ing and then even­tu­ally I found my own voice af­ter a cou­ple of sea­sons.

“I have never had any real fore­sight on what I’d be do­ing next in this busi­ness. So when I was do­ing Milo on Full Frontal or what­ever it was, I was liv­ing from day to day and never thought any­thing would lead to any­thing.”

The orig­i­nal Chan­nel 10 TV se­ries that cel­e­brated three gen­er­a­tions through a com­pe­ti­tion of ques­tions and games went on a six-year hia­tus be­fore Chan­nel 9 re­vamped it this year with a new gen­er­a­tion cat­e­gory (Gen X, Gen Y and Gen Z) and new team cap­tains (Robyn But­ler, Andy Lee and Lau­rence Box­hall).

There was also meant to be a new host but when Mi­callef was asked to help with cap­tain au­di­tions, he had too much fun.

“Even though I wouldn’t have con­sid­ered it oth­er­wise, this is dif­fer­ent enough to war­rant do­ing again and I don’t feel like I’m try­ing to re­peat my­self,” baby boomer Mi­callef said.

“I do spend a lot of the time just sit­ting there laugh­ing at what’s go­ing on, which is very un­pro­fes­sional of me but I’m gen­uinely amused by what ev­ery­one else is do­ing.

“Not too much de­pends on it and that’s fun to watch be­cause cook­ing that flan is so se­ri­ous on Chan­nel 10 and peo­ple are weep­ing at the very prospect of what this will mean for them. This is de­lib­er­ately not se­ri­ous and I think it’s a nice an­ti­dote.”

Filmed at Dock­lands Stu­dios Melbourne, the fa­ther of three Gen Zs has been re­u­nited with com­edy part­ner But­ler (Mi­callef Tonight, Welcher and Welcher) and Lee af­ter guest­ing on Hamish and Andy while he is get­ting to know Box­hall, who is study­ing at NIDA.

He said his lack of pop cul­ture knowl­edge meant he had no in­put with the ques­tions but did some­times gen­er­ate seg­ment ti­tles and ideas.

“I tend to have a pass over the script if there are things I have to do and might re­jig it, but of­ten that’s chucked out on the night as we’re go­ing,” Mi­callef said.

“Peo­ple work hard to write 10 ques­tions and then some­times they’re never used be­cause it hasn’t gone as planned. We just save it for next sea­son.”

Talkin’ ‘Bout Your Gen­er­a­tion airs on Chan­nel 9, Mon­days at 7.30pm.

“My mid­dle boy is do­ing Year 12 so it’s a very se­ri­ous year for him and he’ll watch the re­peat on Satur­day at 7pm. We en­cour­age that but we en­cour­age ev­ery­one else to watch it on Mon­days at 7.30pm, oth­er­wise the rat­ings don’t count,” he said.

Pic­ture: David Baylis­mu­ni­ d483749

It’s all a game: premier Aus­tralian co­me­dian Shaun Mi­callef.

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