Paramount ANZ’s Beverley McGarvey confident new 2023 formats will perform

During an interview with Mumbrella after Paramount Australia and New Zealand ANZ revealed its 2023 content slate, Beverley McGarvey – executive vice president and chief content officer – was asked what the broadcaster will do if its new formats do not perform.

“Every show is developed in a different way. I think we’re starting to see our audience have an appetite for new formats,” McGarvey said. “We only launched one big new format this year, Hunted, which did really well, and we’ve still got three to come this year, and multiple new shows next year.”

She added: “I think a number of things you can do, you can of course test things, and some of the shows, for example, Taskmaster, have 16 years in the UK and 30 other markets so the format is pretty well tested already if you class it properly you’re in a pretty good condition. I think you can’t expect shows to work overnight anymore, I think you have to give shows the chance to grow and give audiences the chance to find them, and if you cancel shows too quickly, it often is not super level because you end up potentially walking away from something that could be really successful. We consider every format in a different way.”

Paramount Australia and New Zealand ANZ revealed 2023 upfronts yesterday afternoon its key tentpole primetime formats such as Gogglebox Australia, MasterChef Australia, Would I Lie To You?, Australian Survivor, Have You Been Paying Attention?, and Bondi Rescue were all set to return to screens, with a bevy of new formats also set to shake up the network’s programming in the new year.

The content slate also previewed shows set to premiere late this year, headlined by The Real Love Boat. Setting the search for love on the high seas, this reality series is a feel-good tone of the original Love Boat, proving a fancy mansion isn’t the only place where romance can blossom.

In addition, The Traitors is a new show that takes the whodunit murder mystery to the next level. Hosted by Rodger Corser, the series sees 24 strangers converge on an old hotel in the countryside where they’re forced to lie and deceive to win a $250,000 prize. 

Meanwhile, the company said if you want to watch the biggest names in Australia living in each other’s pockets while battling it out in exhausting physical challenges, look no further than The Challenge Australia. 

Host Brihony Dawson said: “Earlier this year some of the biggest names in Australian sport and entertainment descended on the Argentinian wilderness to compete in the world’s most gruelling – not to mention, cutthroat – competition.

“With the unique challenges I’ll be setting and the curveballs I’ll be throwing, only two competitors will survive to be crowned champions of The Challenge Australia.”

Kicking off the new year, the company will release a new season of The Bachelors, screening throughout January 2023. 

Host Osher Günsberg said: “We find love and celebrate love better than anyone. And it all happens in our glamorous new home on the Gold Coast.

“There’s a lot that’s going to look and feel very different. I mean, the name of the show for starters. It’s The Bachelors. Plural. There are three of them. 

“Joining these three eligible young men from across the country are smart, powerful, beautiful women who – like our Bachelors – are over the dating apps, the ghosting and the inability to commit.”

From February, Australian Survivor returns with a US format, Heroes Versus Villains.

Complementing Australian Survivor is the third season of The Dog House Australia. 

Returning on Monday nights is the second season of Would I Lie To You? with Chrissie Swan, Frank Woodley and a new team captain. Plus, Charlie Pickering.

Pickering said: “I have always loved the show, and as a new team captain I can’t wait to maximise my opportunities to lie to the Australian public.”

Rounding out the week is the premiere of Taskmaster Australia. 

Tom Gleeson stars as the Taskmaster, with Tom Cashman his devoted assistant. Each week the two Toms set five comedians a range of ridiculous tasks designed to bamboozle brains and put funny bones to the test. In this inaugural season, stars to appear in the show are Julia Morris, Luke McGregor, Jimmy Rees, Nina Oyama and Danielle Walker. 

To keep the laughs going, Paramount ANZ said Gogglebox Australia is back. After two years locked Down Under, the ninth season of the Logie award-winning I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here! is returning to South Africa, just in time for Easter. 

MasterChef Australia, airing after 14 seasons, returns in winter for a shorter, more compact run. This year the aim is to keep audiences not only entertained but guessing as well, with Season 15 branded as MasterChef Australia: Secrets & Surprises.

Joining the MasterChef quarter are comedies  Have You Been Paying Attention? and The Cheap Seats, plus several new Australian dramas.

Crime thriller North Shore arrives with an outstanding pedigree. Its creator is Mike Bullen of Cold Feet fame. It’s directed by the highly acclaimed Gregor Jordan. And it stars Joanne Froggatt. 

The premise is intriguing: What happens when a British detective and his Australian counterpart team up to solve a murder? The answer is a clash of cultures and personalities. Beyond that, you’ll have to watch to find out…

Another drama sure to grab plenty of attention is Paper Dolls. This fictional series tracks the meteoric rise of a girl band spawned by a reality television show. A cautionary tale about the pitfalls of sudden fame, Paper Dolls will doubtless strike a chord with audiences who have grown up amid the boom in TV talent shows this century.

Moreover, the company said in the second half of 2023, its schedule is packed with returning success stories from 2022. There are more fugitives desperate to avoid capture in Hunted and loads of lonely-hearts setting sail on the sea of romance aboard The Real Love Boat.

In addition, returning popular factual series such as Ambulance Australia and Bondi Rescue, plus the new series The First Inventors. 

The First Inventors will transport you back in time – between 70,000 and 120,000 years ago – to a community in the midst of developing sophisticated stone tools, art, agriculture, irrigation and much more. 

Off the back of The Dog House Australia, Paramount said it will debut new show Turning Problem Pooches Into Pristine Pets. Graeme Hall, the Dogfather of dog training, is up for a new challenge: helping Australians train their new canine compadre.

Meanwhile, for the first time ever on free-to-air TV, 2023 will see the premiere of Location, Location, Location.

Another new format to hit in 2023 is a MasterChef spinoff, Dessert Masters. This short and sweet series is all about – as the name suggests – desserts, with ten masters of their art battling for the inaugural title of Dessert Master.

Moving into news content, 10 News First, is back. Host Sandra Sully said: “In a world that’s getting smaller, news has never been more relied upon, more sought after or simply, more important. 

“News you can trust is more critical than ever – and our journalists, producers and crews across the country work around the clock and across multiple platforms to ensure our viewers can access the latest news quickly and accurately.” 

Every week more than three million Australians join the conversation on The Project – the youngest news and current affairs show on TV.  

More than half of The Project’s audience is under the age of 50. Its story-telling style cuts through the relentless news cycle and transforms headlines into conversations. 

Host Waleed Aly said: “The Project team is there to test new ideas, debate opinions, and engage candidly and comically with the world’s biggest stars and newsmakers. All this incredible news content delivered straight to your TV, tablet, or phone – anytime, anyplace.” 

And, Studio 10 is back on weekday mornings.

Marquee Sport is right at home on 10 too. From the Australian MotoGP and the Formula 1 Australian Grand Prix to the Melbourne Cup Carnival, 10 will deliver big and memorable sporting moments in 2023. 

Plus, 10 Bold will continue to kick goals with the Isuzu UTE A-League matches across the season, along with NBL games every Sunday on 10 Peach.

Meanwhile, on 10 Bold, there are shows like Star Trek: Discovery, Law & Order: SVU, NCIS, NCIS: Los Angeles, NCIS: New Orleans, Blue Bloods and Bull.

And 10 Peach continues to be the go-to channel for ‘80s, ‘90s and ‘00s nostalgia with The Big Bang Theory, Mom, Seinfeld and Friends.

Over on 10 Shake, it’s sitcoms, romcoms, stand-up comedy and everything in between. Shows like PAW Patrol, Blaze and the Monster Machines, Blue’s Clues & You!, The Loud House, The Thundermans and Game Shakers hopefully will keep the little ones at bay, plus more for adults with The Office US, South Park, Workaholics, Catfish, Comedy Central Roasts, Comedy Central Stand Up and a heap of Aussie stand-up specials. 


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