Randling’s ratings failure was partly because of budget shortcuts admits ABC boss

denton randlingThe failure of Andrew Denton’s word game comedy Randling to find an audience was partly because of the cost cutting process the ABC put the show through, MD Mark Scott has conceded.

The show, in the ABC’s key 8.30pm Wednesday night comedy slot, struggled to reach a metro audience of 600,000. Its final week, by which time it had moved to 9.30pm, it rated just 434,000.

But the entire 27-episode series was shot before any of it was aired, leaving no opportunity for Denton’s production house Zapruder’s Other Films to develop the format in response to audience reaction.

Scott told Mumbrella’s sister title Encore: “One of the things we did with Randling that we learned from, and this was partly a budget thing, was that we locked all that away. It was all locked away before it went to air. If we had been broadcasting it as we were making it, we probably would have fine tuned it along the way and we weren’t able to.”

Zapruder’s, which has since merged to form Cordell Jigsaw Zapruder, is also responsible for one of the ABC’s biggest shows – adland panel discussion Gruen.

Meanwhile, among the comedy output that Scott signalled as a favourite was A Moody Christmas, produced by Sydney production house Jungleboys. Scott said he watched the series twice and hoped to create further episodes.


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