Despite a 29 year run as one of Australia’s favourite shows, 10 has taken the axe to Totally Wild
Channel 10 has killed off it Brisbane-based kids shows as it continues its focus on primetime programming
The network has decided to axe Totally Wild after an impressive 29 year run. Science-based sister show Scope has also been axed.
Last year the network made significant cuts to its news division which saw some local bulletins scrapped and a range of stars made redundant.
When contacted by TV Blackbox a Network 10 spokesperson said:
“Network 10 today informed staff that Totally Wild and Scope will no longer be produced, which will result in a reduction of roles.
“Network 10 remains committed to creating and producing local children’s content, but its strategy has evolved to include the development and production of more children’s drama programs.
“The Network 10 children’s department will remain an integral part of the business and will remain based in Brisbane.
“As a result of these shows no longer being produced, some on-air presenters and production staff will leave Network 10. The network would like to thank those people for their dedication and hard work.
“No further details are available at this stage.”
The move falls in line with Channel 7 which axed its children’s television productions last year.
Local content quotas were put on hold during 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) and Screen Australia are set to release their response to the ACCC’s Digital Platforms Inquiry at the end of February. Part of that report will outline recommendations for local children’s TV content quotas.
Before COVID-19 television broadcasters in Australia were required to air 390 hours of P and C rated material with at least 130 hours being first-release children’s content.
TV Blackbox understands the network will focus on drama productions for kids and the department at TVQ will not be shut down. Staff currently working on Totally Wild and Scope will be able to apply for other positions within the department.
Chief Content Officer Beverley McGarvey sent this e-mail out to staff:
I wanted to let you know that this morning we announced to staff that Totally Wild and Scope will cease production.
Following an initial period of consultation, a redundancy program will commence for some members of the children’s department.
We remain committed to creating and producing local children’s content and we deeply value this team’s work. But our business strategy has evolved to include the development and production of more children’s drama programs.
The children’s department will remain an integral part of the programming department and our broader business and will remain based at TVQ.
Unfortunately, this means we will say goodbye to some incredibly talented colleagues and friends who have made important contributions to our business.
I would like to express my sincere thanks and gratitude for the great work, commitment and enthusiasm the departing staff have shown to their jobs and our company. It is in no way a reflection of their talent, contribution or passion.
Totally Wild will remain on air until July 2021 and Scope is currently not on air.
It’s understood Shake Takes will continue under the changes.
*This post updates