Celebrity Name Game bumped as Ten turns to news to boost struggling early evening slate

Ten has confirmed that it will begin trialling a 90-minute news bulletin this week.

The experimental format will begin at 5pm on weeknights, the slot occupied by 10 News First.

Sandra Sully, the host of 10 News First, will continue her hosting duties in the extended bulletin

During the trial, Grant Denyer-hosted game show, Celebrity Name Game, which occupies the 6pm slot, will be moved to 10 Bold.

The 6pm slot has proved a difficult one for Ten to crack over the past two years. Family Feud, which was also hosted by Denyer, was axed in May of 2018, following declining ratings and audience fatigue with the format.

To replace Family Feud, Ten introduced Pointless, a quiz show format imported from the UK and hosted by Dr Andrew Rochford and Mark Humphries. The show premiered to 493,000 metro viewers, however, numbers steadily declined and it was cancelled in February after six months on air.

Celebrity Name Game was announced by Ten in March of this year, and premiered on 13 May to 314,000 metro viewers. Denyer’s second turn at the 6pm slot also struggled to find an audience with viewership steadily dropping throughout the year.

Ten is the only commercial channel which struggles in the news arena. Seven’s Seven News is often the most-watched program of the night, sometimes pulling in up to 1m metro viewers, followed hotly behind by Nine News. The platform regularly gives both Nine and Seven a boost to their overall audience shares, something Ten has been missing during its struggles with the early evening slot.

A Network Ten spokesperson told Mumbrella: “We have decided to take the opportunity of changes to the commercial news landscape along with an intense news cycle to better serve our audiences by offering a quality extended local news service in all states.”

Sandra Sully will continue to host the hour of 10 News First, however, Ten would not confirm the format of the full 90 minutes or details of any other hosting changes.


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