Nine axes Ben Elton’s Live From Planet Earth

Ben Elton’s Live from Planet Earth has been cancelled without its fourth episode airing.

Nine announced the decision following last night’s episode rating around 200,000 (update: reportedly 189,000)  metro viewers in a later slot after being moved because of coverage of the New Zealand Earthquake.

Most commentary has suggested that Nine had contracted a minimum of four episodes from Fremantle Media with an option for more.

The first episode of Live From Planet Earth rated just 455,000 metro viewers with the second declining to 384,000.

The announcement from Nine said:

“Ben and his team have done a fantastic job uncovering new Australian talent and we appreciate all of their hard work and dedication. We are all very proud of the show but unfortunately it has not found the audience we had hoped for. We thank Ben and all the cast and crew for their commitment and wish them all the best.”

Michael Healy, Nine’s director of TV, said: “Comedy is always risky, and live comedy is the riskiest of all. We are pleased to have taken the chance to support the local industry.”

Ian Hogg, CEO of Fremantle Media, said: “We have immense respect for Ben. Through our development deal, we look forward to some exciting comedy and drama projects in the future.”


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