Chan­nel 10’s Pi­lot Week af­fords Rove McManus the chance to re­turn to his va­ri­ety show roots in Bring Back … Satur­day Night, which will be filmed live in front of a stu­dio au­di­ence in a bid to se­cure a full sea­son

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R“When you con­sider nor­mally when you do a pi­lot you can do it in the con­fines of a safe stu­dio en­vi­ron­ment be­hind closed doors and you can do a sec­ond take if you want to, I’m ex­cited Ten are will­ing to take that risk.”

This is McManus’s bid to re­vive Aus­tralia’s Satur­day night view­ing, which has been rel­e­gated to re­peats and movies as of late.

“We’re pi­lot­ing the idea of Satur­day night be­ing a vi­able night for view­ing en­ter­tain­ment,” he says.

“At the mo­ment it’s a bit of a TV waste­land. I’m ex­cited by the idea of mak­ing a go of this to find an au­di­ence not be­ing served on this night of the week.

“If you look at the rat­ings Satur­day just seems to drop away, but it can’t just be ‘well they’re all out at par­ties or a sport­ing event’. “Maybe don’t go to a stream­ing ser­vice. You can stick to free-to-air TV and there’s some­thing for you to watch.”

He de­scribes Bring Back … Satur­day Night as a mix of Hey, Hey It’s Satur­day, The DGen­er­a­tion and his lon­grun­ning va­ri­ety show Rove.

“It’s all those pro­grams wrapped up into one,” he says. “We’ve been work­ing on the tone, com­ing up with seg­ment ideas, book­ing tal­ent – work­ing out what the show will be. Ob­vi­ously be­cause we’re on a Satur­day night the idea is to utilise the fact that it’s the most frac­tured night of the week.

“We’ll be cross­ing live to events hap­pen­ing around the coun­try but also mak­ing sure we’ve got a very ex­cit­ing live stu­dio pro­gram for peo­ple to en­joy as well. At this point it’s about putting all the pieces of the puzzle to­gether but you don’t get to sit back and look at it un­til the red light starts flash­ing.

“I’m of a gen­er­a­tion where The D-Gen­er­a­tion was a show that we would watch be­fore we went out, or if you were out at a friend’s party we would stop to watch the show. I do think Satur­day night has a legacy, prob­a­bly more than peo­ple re­alise, and it would be ex­cit­ing if we could rekin­dle the em­bers.” Bring Back … Satur­day Night pre­mieres on Satur­day at 7.30pm on Ten

Rove McManus wants to re­vive Aus­tralia’s Satur­day night view­ing.

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