Daniel Bedingfield to judge on X Factor NZ

International pop sensation Daniel Bedingfield will join Stan Walker on the judging panel for TV3’s The X Factor NZ.

One of the most successful artists produced by New Zealand, the Kiwi-born singer-songwriter has enjoyed phenomenal international success: including multiple number one UK singles, international album sales in the multi-millions and a BRIT Award for Best British Male Artist.

Bedingfield is best known for the hit ‘Gotta Get Thru This’, famously recorded in his bedroom, which topped the UK charts. The track also cracked the top 10 on the US Billboard Hot 100, and earned Bedingfield a Grammy nomination for Best Dance Recording.

His first album, also called ‘Gotta Get Thru This’, sold over four million copies worldwide, and gave Bedingfield a second UK number one with ‘If You’re Not the One’, as well as three further top 10 UK hits. His second album, ‘Second First Impression’, reached number eight in the UK, and Bedingfield released the EP ‘Stop the Traffik – Secret Fear’ earlier in 2012.

Bedingfield is known around the world as a British singer-songwriter, but the Kiwi-born musician says he is looking forward to being part of the search for the next great New Zealand recording star.

“Sweet, I get to spend three months in New Zealand with a bunch of random geniuses, coaching them, and perhaps helping them live their wildest dreams (can’t help the ones who want to breed sea monkeys),” he says.

“I’ve been voice coaching around the world for a little while and I find it particularly exciting to assist in the development of raw talent. There’s something particularly refreshing about engaging with wide-eyed innocence.”

Daniel Bedingfield is the second announced Judge for The X Factor NZ, which will be hosted by Dominic Bowden. Bedingfield joins Stan Walker on what will be a four-person judging panel; the final two female judges will be revealed in the coming months.

TV3 is also delighted to announce Samsung Electronics as the technology partner for The X Factor NZ. Samsung Electronics joins Broadcast Sponsor Ford New Zealand, and programme partners McDonald’s and Coca-Cola. NZ on Air is a minority funder of the show.

Entry information is now available online, as well as details of the pre-audition tour, which takes place in early 2013. Starting in Queenstown on January 5, and finishing in Kaitaia on Waitangi Day, The X Factor NZ will travel to 27 locations throughout New Zealand to find contestants for the first local version of the global television phenomenon.

The X Factor NZ is a SYCO owned format and will be co-produced by MediaWorks and FremantleMedia Australia.

For more information, including pre-audition dates and entry forms, visit TV3.co.nz/thexfactornz or join the conversation at facebook.com/xfactornz.

Charlotte Bellis to host new look 60 Minutes on Prime

The world’s most successful television current affairs programme, 60 Minutes, moves to Prime with a fresh new look for 2013.

The multi-award winning series, renowned for its hard-hitting investigative reports, is part of a range of new world-class programming which will screen on the free-to-air network as part of a studio volume deal with CBS Studios International.

The multi-year deal gives Prime exclusive free-to-air broadcasting rights in New Zealand to a broad range of new series that the Hollywood studio produces from the start of the new US television season in the fall of 2012, from network drama to comedy and factual programming including 60 Minutes.

“60 Minutes is Prime’s first foray into current affairs programming and as such we have made a considerable investment to ensure the content will not only live up to current fans expectations but offer compelling and relevant content for new viewers,” said Prime Channel Manager, Kathy Wright.

“I’m delighted to have Belinda Henley on board as Producer, and she and her team have been working to ensure a strong mix of New Zealand and international content that will continue to build on the series’ popularity in this market,” she said.

Ms Wright said New Zealand stories will be an important feature of 60 Minutes and the production team are working with a number of local content providers to offer a diverse selection of stories from reporters from across New Zealand.

Producer Belinda Henley, a 15-year veteran of news and current affairs reporting for a range of international broadcasters including Reuters, CNN, BBC and Al Jazeera English, is excited to be working on 60 Minutes.

“Since its first airing 1968, 60 Minutes has provided the benchmark for current affairs reporting. It is a show I have always admired and respected as a broadcaster and enjoyed as a viewer. I am hugely excited at the opportunity to be involved in 60 Minutes as it makes its new home on Prime,” she said.

“While we will be staying true to the brand, its values and all it stands for, we will also be putting our own stamp on it with our local content and the journalists we use to deliver those stories,” said Ms Henley.

Prime has also confirmed Charlotte Bellis, weekend anchor of Prime News: First at 5.30, will host 60 Minutes for the network alongside her news duties. Screening details will be released early in 2013.

Debate the issues on ‘The Vote’

MediaWorks TV is inviting Kiwis to have their say on the issues of the day, with brand new primetime current affairs show The Vote, coming to TV3 in 2013.

Hosted by Duncan Garner and Guyon Espiner, The Vote will be a monthly series of entertaining and informative national debates on the big issues facing New Zealanders.

In what may be a first for current affairs television in New Zealand, the debates will take place in theatres with audience participation, including voting. Viewers at home will be invited to take part, by having their say and voting online.

The Vote will see Duncan and Guyon lead opposing teams of leading New Zealanders in a bid to win over both those present in the theatre and the television audience.

Duncan Garner says: “Nothing quite like this has been tried before. We think it will bring New Zealanders together in a huge open forum, provoking arguments in every living room. It’s going to be seat-of-the-pants stuff – serious and seriously fun at the same time.”

Guyon Espiner says: “A debate show where we tackle the issues New Zealanders are talking about – that’s great. Add in a bit of humour, drama and a competitive edge – that’s even better. But to do it on a brand new TV show in primetime is unique and very exciting. This is going to be a whole lot of fun for us to do and for viewers to watch.”

The Vote will be produced by TV3’s News and Current Affairs division with funding from NZ On Air. It will screen once every four weeks in the same timeslot as 3rd Degree, TV3’s new one-hour current affairs programme.