Seven begins the countdown to the delayed Tokyo Olympics with 2000 Olympic Games specials

As it celebrates the one year to go milestone for a second time, Seven will air two Olympic Games specials celebrating the best moments from Sydney 2000.

The Tokyo 2020 Games have been postponed until 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The first episode, airing on July 29, will relive all the best moments from the Sydney Opening Ceremony, which aired to more than 10m metro viewers on Seven. For the first time, viewers will be able to hear the secrets inside the night and see some near-disasters.

The episode will feature newly filmed interviews with people including headline acts Vanessa Amorosi, James Morrison, Human Nature, Adam Garcia, Djakapurra Munyarryun and Nikki Webster, and the creative talent behind the Ceremony, including producers David Atkins and Ric Birch.

It will also feature performances from John Farnham, Olivia Newton-John, Tina Arena and Julie Anthony, interviews with Australian Olympic Flagbearer Andrew Gaze and Cathy Freeman, and Tokyo 2020 medal contenders Cate Campbell, Bronte Campbell, Jess Fox, Mack Horton, Emma McKeon and Ellia Green.

Head of Olympics and Commonwealth Games Seven West Media Andy Kay commented: “As one of only five countries that have competed at every Olympiad since 1896, the Olympic Games is deeply etched into Australia’s sporting DNA. That was never more evident than in Sydney 2000.

“For those who were there and the many more who watched on Seven, the memories of Australia’s greatest ever sporting moment will always remain. And with Tokyo 2020 now just one year away, what better time to relive the magic of Sydney – and to look forward to the next exciting chapter in our rich Olympic history.”

The next episode, airing on August 5, will take viewers back to the two weeks of competition that followed in Sydney with a two-hour special on the Olympic Games Sydney 2000 Moments that Moved Us.

Hosted by Sunrise’s Mark Beretta, Seven’s Olympic Games experts led by Bruce McAvaney, Johanna Griggs, Mark Beretta, Dennis Cometti, Pat Welsh, Lord Sebastian Coe, Tamsyn Manou and Raelene Boyle have revisited the Games of the XXVII Olympiad and caught up with some of the athletes whose deeds captivated the nation.

The athletes include swimming stars Ian Thorpe, Susie O’Neill, Grant Hackett, Kieren Perkins, Michael Klim, Bill Kirby and Todd Pearson, Gold medalists Andrew Hoy (equestrian), Lauren Burns (taekwondo), Rechelle Hawkes (hockey), Yvette Higgins (water polo), Kerri Pottharst and Natalie Cook (beach volleyball), and Belinda Stowell (sailing, 470 Class), Silver medalists and fan favourites Tatiana Grigorieva (pole vault) and Ji Wallace (trampoline gymnastics) and international track and field competitors Maurice Greene, Ato Boldon and Michael Johnson.

Chief revenue officer and director of Olympics Kurt Burnette added: “These moments are etched into Australian minds forever. We’ve seen research prove nostalgia has played a big role in the Australian psyche through COVID-19 and lockdown.

“We will use these great moments of the past to remind Australia of the good times, the pride and inspiration all of which can come again. Those elements have never been more relevant, to importantly then propel and project forward to Tokyo. To create anticipation and a sense of pride of what is to come. Culminating in a celebration on air across Sunrise, 7NEWS, The Morning Show and our AFL coverage – with more celebration to come in September for the 20-year anniversary of Sydney 2000.”

The Games of the XXXII Olympiad are scheduled to run from July 23 to August 8 next year.


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