Tyra pulls plug on talk show

Tyra Banks has announced she is ending her award winning talk show.

Banks told fans via her website that the current season will be the last. “I’ve been loving having fun, coming into your living rooms, bedrooms, hair salons for the past 5 years.” she said.

Banks also pointed out that ratings for the show were at record levels and she has plans to launch her own New York-based production company ‘Bankable Studios’.

In the statement Tyra also paid homage to Oprah Winfrey who also announced the end of her talk show this year. “You have had, and continue to have, such an amazing impact on me. I salute you.” she said.


A decade of news with Simon and Wendy, then countdown til 12 with Jason Gunn

TV ONE’s New Year’s Eve line-up sees a selection of special entertainment shows and a chance to look at the year that was for Kiwis.

The evening kicks off at 7.30pm, with The Royal Variety Performance, performed in the United Kingdom annually in aid of the Entertainment Artistes’ Benevolent Fund (the EABF). This year’s 81st performance will be staged in Blackpool for the first time since 1955, and hosted by award-winning comedian Peter Kay. Featuring a host of musicians, comedians and dancers, the star-studded line-up includes: the winner of this year’s Britain’s Got Talent, Diversity; the multi-award winning Bette Midler; Oscar-winner Whoopi Goldberg, along with the cast of the smash-hit West End production, Sister Act; Canadian singer and Grammy Award-winner, Michael Buble; X Factor winner Alexandra Burke; teen superstar Miley Cyrus; opera star Katherine Jenkins; and the critically acclaimed comedians Jason Manford and Paddy McGuinness.

At 9.30pm, ONE News presenters Simon Dallow and Wendy Petrie will host ONE Decade In The Making, a look at the news events that shaped the ‘noughties’ – the years 2000 to 2009. From the celebrations at the dawning of the century; the 9/11 attacks; and the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq; through to the political events in New Zealand and overseas; changes in technology; and Kiwi triumphs on the sporting stage.

Jason Gunn hosts TV ONE’s New Year’s Eve Special at 10.30pm, which takes a look at the big shows, big stories and big events from 2009. Packed with roving reports and celebrity messages, Gunn and special guests will take viewers on a countdown to the New Year.

Gunn says he’s looking forward to giving the county an opportunity to countdown to midnight together. “It’s been a while since we’ve had an official countdown. In my experience, you’re with a few people and you’re kind of struggling to tune in to when exactly it is midnight, and by the time you realise, you’re about 15 seconds too late.

“So finally this year, there will be a place, where as a country, we can all gather and say ‘let’s tune in with Jase’ – there will be an official countdown, and we can all get there at the same time.”

He says it’s not until you start looking back at the amazing achievements and memorable moments of the year that you realise a lot has happened in 2009. “From the people that we’ve lost locally and internationally (sadly), to the winners that we’ve had as Kiwis, to just incredible moments, 2009 has been jam packed. Plus, there’s a few special guests joining us that I’m quite excited about – they appear to be willing to do a few out of the ordinary things.”

Whether you watch the whole show, or have it on in the background and tune in and out, grab yourself a glass, sit back, have a bit of a reminisce, says Gunn.


Veitch returns to broadcasting

Broadcaster Tony Veitch will make his return to broadcasting with The Radio Network in 2010.

Veitch will work for Newstalk ZB and Radio Sport as a sports news presenter and journalist.

Veitch has been off air since July 2008 when he was suspended and then resigned following a domestic dispute, since dealt with by the courts.

TRN said that the engagement of Tony Veitch as a contractor would give him the chance to prove himself again.


7 Days – 12 Months: End of year special

Missing your weekly 7 Days dose? Fear not, Jeremy Corbett and co. are back this week in 7 Days – 12 Months, screening on Wednesday, December 30th at 9:30pm on 3.

According to 7 Days producer Jon Bridges, this week’s special finds New Zealand’s top comedians, including; Paul Ego, Dai Henwood, Ben Hurley, Jeremy Elwood, Michele A’court, and Steve Wrigley pitting their wits against the biggest news stories of 2009.

“It is a year-in-review show where instead of taking the piss out of the last seven days’ events, we take the piss out of the events of 2009,” Bridges explains.

“We will be playing all the favourite games like My Kid Could Draw That, Captions and Yes Minister,” he continues.

“As well as that we will be playing some (well, hopefully at least one) new games as well, especially designed for the festive New Year spirit.”

Bridges adds that on top of “reviewing” the year past, 7 Days – 12 Months will also allow audiences to view never-before-seen 7 Days material, which he promises will be worth the wait.

“We have also got some pieces from the whole series which we haven’t been able to play on air so far which we’ve been dying to show you,” he says, adding, “If you watch it you’ll have a better time staying in on the 30th than you will going out on the 31st, but luckily you can do both.”

You can’t argue with that… Make sure not to miss Jeremy Corbett and co. when they round up the year in 7 Days – 12 Months, screening on Wednesday, December 30th at 9:30pm on 3.


Henry complaint upheld

TVNZ’s Complaints Committee has upheld complaints about remarks made by Breakfast presenter Paul Henry concerning singer Susan Boyle, on the grounds of Good Taste and Decency.

Complaints relating to other Standards under the Free to Air Television Code of Broadcasting Practice have not been upheld.

The issue relates to a broadcast on November 23 in which Mr Henry quoted from a magazine article that noted the singer suffered mild intellectual impairment, which Mr Henry joked about and characterised as a revelation that she was ‘retarded’.

(Contrary to widespread media reports, the word ‘retard’ – a pejorative – was never used.)

The TVNZ Complaints Committee received the following statement from Mr Henry:

“It was never my intention to cause offence to people with disabilities. It upsets me greatly that anyone would imagine I had intended to cause offence or hurt over this or any issue.

“I am sorry that some people have taken what I said in a way that I never intended.

“In fact, I have a great amount of respect for people who rise to the challenges imposed on them in life. The amount of support and coverage I, and the programmes I’m associated with, give to these issues is evidence of the commitment we have to these people, their families and friends.”

While the Complaints Committee accepted that Mr Henry did not intend to cause offence and in fact meant the piece to be humorous, it found that on this occasion the language used and manner in which it was conveyed would have caused offence to a significant number of viewers.

To constitute a breach of the Good Taste and Decency Standard under the Code, the material complained of must be unacceptable to a significant number of viewers in the context in which it is shown.

While the Committee considered relevant context – notably that Mr Henry is well known for his challenging sense of humour and there is considerable audience expectation that he will be provocative in his language and manner on occasions – it found the standard was breached in this case.

Under the Broadcasting Act, people who make formal complaints are entitled to refer the matter to the Broadcasting Standards Authority if they are dissatisfied with the outcome of the initial finding from the broadcaster.

TVNZ’s head of News and Current Affairs, Anthony Flannery, says the decision is an acknowledgement that the right to freedom of expression carries with it a responsibility to exercise care, particularly in regard to the more vulnerable sectors of society.

“There is a legitimate place for Paul Henry’s boundary-pushing style and sense of humour in broadcasting.

“It should also be remembered that in 600 hours of live television each year there have been very few times when he has overstepped the mark.

‘However we acknowledge that this was one such occasion, and we apologise to those who were hurt and distressed by it.”



Family favourites on TV2 this Christmas

To celebrate Christmas Day, TV2 has a festive and fun-packed line-up of movies for the whole family to enjoy, from dawn until dusk.

For the early risers, A Miser Brother’s Christmas, at 7.05am, is a family animation following Santa as he gets stuck in the middle of the Miser brothers’ feud. Can the brothers overcome their differences and save Christmas?

In Santa Buddies at 12pm, Puppy Paws, the feisty son of Santa Paws, forgets the true meaning of Christmas, and it’s up to the Buddies, a group of puppies – Budderball, B-Dawg, Rosebud, Buddha, and Mudbud – to remind him that Christmas is not about what you get; it’s about what you give. Join the Buddies on an exciting journey to the magical world of the North Pole.

At 2.15pm, Santa Baby 2 sees Mary Class (Jenny McCarthy, Charmed) – Santa’s business minded daughter – step in to help save Christmas. Tired of the responsibilities of the job, Santa (Paul Sorvino, Goodfellas) is ready to pass on the reins to Mary, who feels torn between the family business and running her own high stakes firm in New York City. The situation gets increasingly dire when a disgruntled former elf, Teri (Kelly Stables, Two And A Half Men), in cunning disguise, sows dissension at the North Pole in an effort to take over Christmas.

A doubting boy boards a magical train headed to the North Pole and Santa Claus’ home, in the animated adventure, The Polar Express, screening at 5pm. With the voice talent of Tom Hanks (Forrest Gump) and Leslie Zemeckis (A Christmas Carol).

A family favourite, TV2’s Christmas Movie, Happy Feet, screens at 7.25pm. Mumble is a tone-deaf tap-dancing Emperor Penguin who is unable to sing his ‘heart song’, the ritual required to win a mate. Outcast by his colony for his tap dancing ways, Mumble sets out to solve the mystery of the dwindling supply of edible fish in the ocean. Featuring the voices of Elijah Wood (Lord of the Rings) Robin Williams (Good Will Hunting), Brittany Murphy (Just Married), Hugh Jackman (Australia), Hugo Weaving (Transformers) and Nicole Kidman (Bewitched).

At 9.10pm, Queen Latifah (Hairspray) and LL Cool J (Edison) star in the dramedy, Last Holiday. When a shy sales person learns she has only weeks to live, she quits her job, cashes in her savings, and buys a one-way ticket to Europe for a dream holiday.

The evening closes with the much-loved Hollywood classic Father Of The Bride, screening at 11pm. Steve Martin (Pink Panther) stars as George Banks, an over-protective father who has a hard time letting go of his young daughter Annie (Kimberly Williams), when she unexpectedly announces her plans to wed. With Diane Keaton (The First Wives Club) playing his patient and level-headed wife, and funny-man Martin Short (Saturday Night Live) playing the off-the-wall wedding consultant, Father Of The Bride will entertain and delight, as George faces the hilarious trials and tribulations leading up to the big event.

Friday 25 December

6am – Mickey Mouse Clubhouse – Christmas Special
6.20am – Bah Humduck! A Looney Toons Christmas
7.05am – A Miser Brother’s Christmas
7.50am – What Now – Christmas Special
9.50am – Mickey’s Twice Upon A Christmas
10.55am – Phineas And Ferb – Christmas Special
11.15am – A Muppets Christmas – Letters To Santa
12pm – Santa Buddies
1.30pm – Home Improvement – Christmas Special
2.15pm – Santa Baby 2
3.45pm – Spongebob Squarepants – Christmas Special
4.10pm – 3rd Rock From The Sun – Christmas Special
4.30pm – Merry Madagascar
5pm – The Polar Express
6.40pm – Friends
7pm – Shrek The Halls
7.25pm – Happy Feet
9.10pm – Last Holiday
11pm – Father Of The Bride