Upfronts 2024: Seven network

Upfronts 2024: Seven network
  • New Reality: Dream Home, Stranded on Honeymoon Island, Made in Bondi
  • New Docos: Ego: The Michael Gudinski Story, The Wave, The Rise And Fall Of Kings Cross
  • Dr. Chris Brown animal series: Once in a Lifetime
  • Returning: Farmer, DWTS, SAS Australia, The Voice, Idol, MKR, Big Brother (and Big Brother Uncut returns)
  • Drama: Home & Away, RFDS
  • Digital rights across AFL and Cricket begin

Three shows for new Seven star Chris Brown, a local version of UK docu-reality Made in Chelsea and the return of Big Brother Uncut are just some of the announcements at Seven’s 2024 Upfront at ICC Darling Harbour today.

”That’s massive!” the network declared as it teased Chris Brown to host renovation series Dream Home, joining Sonia Kruger on Dancing with the Stars and fronting a new animal series Once in a Lifetime in which he is joined by celebrities as veterinary assistants on animal adventures.

Made in Bondi, a local adaptation of Made in Chelsea, will follow the lives and loves of Sydney’s young, social elite. It joins new reality series Stranded on Honeymoon Island, based on a Danish format.

Returning reality hits include Farmer Wants a Wife, The Voice, Australian Idol, My Kitchen Rules, SAS Australia, First Dates and Big Brother -with the controversial Big Brother Uncut to return as a 7plus exclusive (NB: it isn’t yet clear how explicit this will be).

In Drama both long-running Home & Away and outback medical drama RFDS are returning, joined by Entertainment special The Australian Roast of John Cleese.

There’s a list of Documentary and Factual including biography Ego: The Michael Gudinski Story, tsunami doco The Wave, The Rise and Fall of Kings Cross, King Con: The Life and Crimes of Hamish McLaren, The Hunters and prison series Australia’s Most Dangerous Prisoners which will “outline in detail the horrendous crimes that landed these men and women” behind bars.

The announcement caps off a strong year for Seven, currently on track for its third successive win in Total People.

Buoyed by its record FIFA World Cup audiences, bolstering its weekly programming, Seven has a 42.2% commercial share nationally in all people so far this year. In the capital cities, its share is 40.8% and in regional Australia it is 45.2%. It also leads nationally in 25 to 54s, 16 to 39s and total shoppers.

Seven West Media Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, James Warburton, said: “Seven creates great content. We eat, sleep and breathe content that connects with heartland Australia more than anyone else. We are the leaders in content. That’s why we have been the most watched network for 15 of the past 17 years, including the past three years in a row.

“Again this year, our content has made us #1 nationally in all people, 25 to 54s and 16 to 39s. No matter how you cut the numbers, more Australians turn to Seven than any other total TV network and we consistently deliver the most watched news, sport and entertainment content across all screens.”

Seven’s Chief Content Officer, Entertainment Programming, Angus Ross, said: “There is a reason Seven is #1. We know Australians. We know how to engage and connect with them. We know the mass cultural moments that entertain, inform and inspire them.

“Consistency, reliability, impact and connection are the hallmarks of Seven. That’s why we are #1 overall again this year, #1 in news, #1 in sport and #1 in local drama, and why our key entertainment tentpoles increased their audiences this year.”

Not returning are Blow Up, We Interrupt This Broadcast, Million Dollar Island, Kitchen Nightmares, Animals Aboard while Ultimate Escape, originally announced for 2023, is now expected in 2025.

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New in 2024

Dream Home
In a brand-new renovation series for the Seven Network, Dream Home will take the genre to new heights as viewers watch six suburban homes transform before their eyes into some of the biggest and the best renovations Australia has ever seen. Hosted by Dr Chris Brown, six pairs of everyday Aussies will battle it out room by room to create astonishing new homes, with a trio of expert judges set to score each new space. The winning couple will not only receive the home of their dreams, but also a life changing prize. Produced by Endemol Shine Australia (a Banijay company), Dream Home will inspire and ignite Australia’s love of home renovation and it’s coming to Seven and 7plus in 2024.

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Stranded On Honeymoon Island
The hottest new reality format, Stranded On Honeymoon Island arrives on Seven and 7plus in 2024. The year’s biggest and most radical dating experiment sees couples matched together following an exciting speed dating event, before being dramatically stranded on a deserted island in nothing but their wedding attire. Isolated and pitted against the forces of nature, and without the distractions of modern-day dating, can true love be found? Bold and fresh, with an instantly compelling opening, the new series is irresistible. Stranded On Honeymoon Island is created by Danish production company Snowman Productions and produced by Endemol Shine Australia (a Banijay Company) for the Seven Network. Seven acquired the rights to Stranded On Honeymoon Island from Red Arrow Studio International, who distribute the format internationally.

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Made in Bondi
The eye-opening reality series Made in Bondi will follow the lives and loves of Sydney’s young, social elite. Set in one of Sydney’s most exclusive neighbourhoods, opulence knows no bounds and drama is always on the menu, with every episode set to provide a front-row seat to jaw-dropping parties, breathtaking fashion and sizzling romances. From trendy bars to luxurious harbourside mansions, this group of young socialites will navigate the interconnected web of relationships that define their lives. Based on the wildly popular reality series Made in Chelsea, Made in Bondi will be co-produced by Universal International Studios’ labels Matchbox Pictures and Monkey for Seven and Channel 4 in the UK. It will launch on Channel 7 and 7plus in Australia and E4 in the UK. NBCUniversal Global Distribution will handle international sales of the new series. The “Made in” format is distributed globally by NBCUniversal Formats, also part of Universal International Studios, a division of Universal Studio Group.

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Once In A Lifetime
In a spectacular new animal adventure series, Australia’s most loved vet, Dr Chris Brown, will be pushed to his limits in the pursuit of the ultimate animal encounter. But he will not be traveling to the furthest corners of the globe alone. In the most delicious twist, Chris will be taking the country’s most intriguing and entertaining personalities along… as his veterinary assistant. This is a journey into the unknown packed with heart and humour in equal measure as these unlikely duos take on the challenge of helping the world’s most iconic animals – all while hopefully not putting themselves on the menu.

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Ego: The Michael Gudinski Story
A rare insight into how hitmaker and trailblazer Michael Gudinski inspired the soundtrack of a nation and revolutionised the Australian music industry, Ego: The Michael Gudinski Story follows his relentless pursuit of success over five decades as he launches Mushroom Records and the careers of countless artists, promotes legendary international acts, and takes Australian music to the world. Featuring exclusive interviews with some of the world’s most influential artists, extraordinary rare footage, and an electrifying soundtrack, this documentary reveals the man behind the music and the unstoppable force that was Michael Gudinski. Ego: The Michael Gudinski Story is a Mushroom Studios production.

The Wave
The Wave is a documentary film examining the atrocities and aftermath of the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, which killed at least 225,000 people and devastated the lives of many millions more. It revisits key locations in South East Asia where the effects of the tsunami can still be felt and includes powerful individual stories of courage, resilience and – ultimately – redemption. It tells how people fought for their lives and their livelihoods; how their overwhelming grief is still – two decades on – often mixed with survivors’ guilt; and where they are today, 20 years on from the wave that changed everything. The Wave is an Arrow Pictures production for the Seven Network.

Australia’s Most Dangerous Prisoners
In Australia, there are over 40,000 men and women currently behind bars. Many of them have done very bad things. They have shattered countless lives, destroyed families and been responsible for unspeakable criminal acts. What did they do? How did they get here? And what are their lives like now? The gripping new series will outline in detail the horrendous crimes that landed these men and women in Australia’s high security jails through first-hand accounts by ex-inmates, former correctional officers, journalists and forensic psychologists, who try to make sense of their world. Australia’s Most Dangerous Prisoners is a WTFN production for the Seven Network.

The Hunters
Legendary investigative crime journalist Adam Shand and “The Human Lie Detector” Steve van Aperen join forces to crack famous crimes wide open. Using unique skills honed razor sharp across decades of experience, they uncover astonishing new leads and evidence, leaving police no choice but to re-open cases. Each episode examines a different high-profile case. The series is jam-packed with ground-breaking revelations, as Adam and Steve revisit crime scenes for a vivid hands-on recounting of each crime. With exclusive access to original detectives, eyewitnesses, survivors and crime experts, they paint a visceral picture of murders, kidnappings, horrific attacks and underworld assassinations. The Hunters is a WTFN production for the Seven Network.

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The Rise And Fall Of Kings Cross
Around the world, most nations have one place, a district or neighbourhood that never sleeps, where life is never dull, art meets crime and money will buy you anything – a place where heaven and hell collide. For Australia, that place is Sydney’s Kings Cross, the internationally notorious bawdy, riotous, gaudy, bloody neighbourhood that for generations has mixed fine art and great entertainment with rampant debauchery. This riveting new documentary features rare and unseen vision, re-enactments and exclusive interviews in a cavalcade of stories spanning 150 years. The Rise And Fall Of Kings Cross is produced by Shadow Productions for the Seven Network.

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King Con: The Life and Crimes Of Hamish McLaren
Hamish McLaren is one of the most successful con men of all time. Throughout a 30-year career, he scammed unsuspecting girlfriends, high profile businessmen, acquaintances and his best friends out of more than $60 million … and that’s just the people who came forward. Authorities suggest it could be twice that amount, as he wreaked havoc on a global scale targeting people in Canada, Asia, Europe and the UK, as well as at home in Australia. This special event series tracks the rise and fall of Australia’s most successful con man, and how Tom Zadravec, a young NSW Police detective, forensically pieced together Hamish’s scams and then brought him down. King Con: The Life and Crimes Of Hamish McLaren is a Perpetual Entertainment production for the Seven Network.

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The Australian Roast Of John Cleese
Some of Australia’s funniest performers pay homage to international comedy legend, John Cleese, in a way that only Aussies know how: firing good-natured insults and jokes at our guest of honour (and each other!). Roastmaster Shane Jacobson is joined by Tom Gleeson, Joel Creasey, Christie Whelan Browne, Steve Vizard, Lehmo, Alex Lee, Lawrence Mooney, Damien Power, Stephen Hall and Rhonda Burchmore in this hilarious television event. The Australian Roast Of John Cleese is an Ocean View Entertainment production for the Seven Network.

First Dates
First Dates is back, as more singles take a chance on love. In this fly-on-the-wall dating series, hopeful singles – including some familiar faces – will have a chance of meeting the man or woman of their dreams in a set up blind date. The new series sees an all-new restaurant fitted out with discreet cameras to record the dates from start to finish, capturing all the awkwardness, funny moments and heart-warming connections. At the end of the evening, it will all come down to the killer question: “Would you like to go on a second date?” First Dates is a Warner Bros. International Television Australia production for the Seven Network.

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Returning in 2024

Farmer Wants A Wife
Ten long-term relationships. Nine marriages. Twenty-six babies. Farmer Wants A Wife is the real deal, a show that is all about true love, not short-term social media fame. This year, the beloved show grew its audience 13% and reached more than nine million viewers. The 2024 season is ready to roll, with more episodes, more farmers, and Samantha Armytage and Natalie Gruzlewski on a quest to find our farmers their one true love. Next year will also bring a Farmer Wants A Wife special event featuring the weddings and babies of past participants. Farmer Wants A Wife is a Fremantle Australia and Eureka Productions co-production for the Seven Network.

The Voice
The spinning red chairs are back in 2024, as host Sonia Kruger and superstar coaches search for Australia’s next singing sensation. The 2023 season of The Voice smashed it out of the park, reaching 11.7 million people, routinely winning its timeslot and generating big numbers on 7plus. Next year will be bigger, better and noisier. The Voice is produced by ITV Studios Australia for the Seven Network.

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Dancing With The Stars
The stars and the sequins will hit the dance floor again in 2024 – and Sonia Kruger will welcome a brand-new co-host: Dr Chris Brown. Together, Sonia, Chris and our expert judges will keep the stars spinning, rhumba-ing and two-stepping. The hit series was hot in 2023, with its audience up 10% year-on-year, including a 19% lift in 18 to 39s, and reached almost seven million people. Dancing With The Stars is produced by BBC Studios Australia and New Zealand for the Seven Network, from a format created by the BBC and distributed by BBC Studios.

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Australian Idol
Twenty years after Guy Sebastian pipped Shannon Noll to become Australia’s first Idol, the international star-making sensation returns to Seven for a second big season. Radio king Kyle Sandilands and TV Week Logie Award winner and acclaimed singer Amy Shark will be joined by a new judge: Australian Idol OG and pop legend Marcia Hines. The trio will traverse the country to find the next Guy, Casey or Royston. Hosts Ricki-Lee and Scott Tweedie are back to help create an Idol dream. Australian Idol is produced by Eureka Productions for the Seven Network.

The 1% Club
A game show like no other, The 1% Club captivated Australia this year, becoming the #1 new entertainment show of 2023. The show and host Jim Jefferies will be back in 2024, delivering an entertaining and hilarious experience as people of all ages and backgrounds find out if they are a rocket scientist or a space cadet. Unlike most quizzes, general knowledge isn’t what players need to excel; instead, it’s all about logic and common sense. To get to the end, contestants will have to bring their A-game to win big and join the elite ranks of the 1%. The 1% Club is produced by BBC Studios Australia and New Zealand, based on a Magnum Media format.

My Kitchen Rules
Australia’s #1 cooking show set taste buds tingling this year, reaching 7.6 million people on Channel 7 and 7plus and serving up 13% more viewers year-on-year (overnight broadcast increase; total TV increase was 10%). Everyday cooks, great food, kitchen dramas and the wise guiding words of Manu Feildel, Colin Fassnidge and Nigella Lawson – plus the iconic ringing of the doorbell – were a winning recipe. The hit series returns in 2024, bigger, tastier and more entertaining than ever. My Kitchen Rules is produced by ITV Studios Australia for the Seven Network.

SAS Australia
This year SAS Australia Chief Instructor Ant Middleton and his team of DS dumped 14 unsuspecting celebrities in a Middle Eastern desert for the biggest physical and emotional test of their lives. What will 2024 bring? A new batch of celebrities. More extreme conditions. More extraordinary tests of stamina and resilience from the real SAS selection process. More remarkable revelations. SAS Australia is produced by Screentime, a Banijay Group company, based on a Minnow Films format.

Home and Away
After 36 years of sun, surf and sizzling drama, Home and Away continues its reign as the most-watched regular local drama series on Australian screens. Four nights a week, an average of more than one million Australians come home to Summer Bay; it’s also the biggest show on 7plus). Next year promises fresh faces, new drama and all the heart-stopping moments that make Home and Away an integral part of the fabric of Australian life. Home and Away is a Seven Production.

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RFDS
More than five million people can’t be wrong: after just two seasons, RFDS has become a much-loved part of Australian TV and digital viewing. The stories of the doctors, nurses, pilots and support staff in the Royal Flying Doctor Service dealing with emergency retrievals across some of the most inhospitable places in the country have won a place in viewers’ hearts. Seven is proud to announce it has commissioned a third season of the soaring series. RFDS is produced by Endemol Shine Australia (a Banijay company) for the Seven Network, with Banijay Rights managing international distribution.

The Chase Australia
Larry Emdur and his chasers – The Supernerd, The Shark, Goliath, The Governess, The Beast, The Tiger Mum and The Smiling Assassin – have made The Chase Australia the #1 afternoon game show in every week of 2023. The hit series will be back in 2024 for another year of tough questions, eager contestants – and with two brand new chasers, including The Professor. The Chase Australia is produced by ITV Studios Australia for the Seven Network based on the original ITV quiz show.

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Big Brother
Host Sonia Kruger and Big Brother will welcome a new batch of housemates when Big Brother returns in 2024. A proven hit with younger viewers and on 7plus, Big Brother defined the reality TV genre and continues to enthral and – sometimes – shock Australians more than 20 years after it first arrived on our screens. Next year’s series will deliver hook ups, break ups, make ups, shake ups and love in a battlefield, plus the return of Big Brother Uncut, a spicy exclusive 7plus only series. Big Brother is produced by Endemol Shine Australia (a Banijay company) for the Seven Network.

Better Homes & Gardens
The longest running lifestyle program on Australian TV, Better Homes and Gardens has been keeping viewers informed, entertained and primed for the weekend since 1995. Celebrating 30 years in 2024, host Johanna Griggs and presenters Adam Dovile, Charlie Albone, Dr Harry Cooper, Graham Ross, Juliet Love, “Fast Ed” Halmagyi, Karen Martini, Melissa King and Pete Colquhoun once again present all the cooking, gardening, home improvement, decorating, design, technology, health, wellbeing, fitness and motoring advice Australia needs. Better Homes and Gardens is a Seven Production.

Highway Patrol
Day in, day out, the members of the Victoria Police Highway Patrol (formerly the Traffic Management Unit) keep the roads and the people on them safe – and Highway Patrol has been with them for 14 years. Highway Patrol is produced by Greenstone TV for the Seven Network with the cooperation of Victoria Police.

Border Security: Australia’s Front Line
One of the most iconic and enduring shows on Australian TV, Border Security: Australia’s Front Line reaches a milestone in 2024: its 20th birthday. The new series will once again showcase the people from Australia’s customs, immigration and quarantine departments who devote their days and nights to keeping the country safe. Riveting, dramatic and often funny, Border Security: Australia’s Front Line is produced by EQ Media for the Seven Network.

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Special Events
The home of special events got bigger this year, when the TV Week Logie Awards returned to Seven for the first time since 1995. The homecoming was a success: the Logies had its biggest audience since 2017 and reached more than 3.6 million people. The glitz, glamour and excitement of the Logies will be back on Seven and 7plus in 2024.

The Perth Channel 7 Telethon is taking place on 21 and 22 October – live from RAC Arena for 26 hours – and will return in 2024. Established in 1968, the Telethon has raised more than $500 million to ensure a better life for our children, now and in the future. Funds raised support more than 100 charitable organisations that deliver media research into childhood diseases and much-needed equipment, programs and health services for sick, vulnerable and disadvantaged children in Western Australia.

Next year will also bring the Good Friday Appeal in partnership with the Herald Sun, which this year raised more than $23 million for the Royal Children’s Hospital in Melbourne.

Carols In The Domain will be live, free and exclusive on Seven on 23 December this year with a galaxy of stars helping Australia celebrate the festive season. It will be back in 2024.

The red-carpet dazzle and all the star power of both the 96th and 97th Annual Academy Awards will be on the screens of Seven in 2024 and 2025.

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News And Current Affairs

Seven’s Director of News and Public Affairs, Craig McPherson, said: “I’m incredibly proud of the entire Seven news and public affairs team and our continued growth this year throughout all of Australia and in the key markets. To hold the position as the most watched news program is a great honour.

“We are very pleased that viewers trust us to keep them informed with truthful and honest reporting. It’s exciting to see that trust has extended across our other platforms via online and social media. It’s here 7NEWS, Sunrise and our other shows are also thriving and allowing us to reach an ever-greater audience.”

7NEWS,
7NEWS Spotlight
Sunrise
The Morning Show

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Sport

AFL, AFLW, Test cricket, BBL, WBBL, Supercars, the NFL Super Bowl, The Everest, the Golden Slipper, the Golden Eagle, the Caulfield Cup, the Cox Plate, The Big Dance, the Sydney Hobart Yacht Race, surfing, netball, golf, hockey

Seven’s full digital rights to the AFL kick in with the Brownlow Medal and the AFL Grand Final in 2024, followed by the AFLW (already on 7plus) then the full 2025 season. Seven’s digital rights to cricket start in October 2024, with Test matches, Women’s Internationals, BBL and WBBL running on 7plus for the first time.

Seven West Media Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, James Warburton, said: “The addition of AFL and Cricket to 7plus will be biggest game changer in the history of Australian streaming. Together, they will represent four billion new minutes of viewing on 7plus a year. That is the equivalent in minutes of the Tokyo Olympics and FIFA Women’s World Cup combined – not 17 days or five weeks but 52 weeks of the year, every year. It’s a whole new ball game, for Seven, for sport fans and for our commercial partners.”

Next year will also bring the national rollout of streamer.com.au, Australia’s fastest-growing community sport live-streaming platform. Established by The West Australian, Streamer is the home of community sport and showcases everything from amateur karate to State tennis and grassroots footy. Unlike other similar platforms, Streamer lets leagues, clubs and players create profiles and do everything from fundraising to sharing their highlight clips from games on social media. Importantly, it also allows sporting organisations to control and house their own content on the site. A true social media disrupter, Streamer has seen incredible growth. In the past eight months alone, viewership has risen by more than 200% and Streamer has onboarded more than 220 clubs. Now it is going national, with BHP as its foundation partner.

7TWO:

Vera, Shetland, Father Brown, McDonald & Dodds, Karen Pirie, Grace, The Yorkshire Vet, Bargain Hunt, Escape To The Country, I Escaped To The Country.

7mate:

Outback Crystal Hunters, Train Rescue Down Under, Outback Comedy Outlaw, Kings Of Pain, American Pickers, Pawn Stars, Storage Wars, Family Guy, American Dad.

7Bravo:

Below Deck Down Under Season 2, Made In Chelsea Season 25, Botched Season 8, Real Housewives of Miami Season 6, Real Housewives of New Jersey Season 13, Buried in the Backyard Season 5, Accident, Suicide or Murder Season 4, Celebrity Prank Wars, The Edge with Orlando Bloom, House of Villains, Luann And Sonja: Welcome To Crappie Lake, Ballroom Dancing Queens and Live From E! live red carpet coverage.

7flix:

Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, Law & Order: Criminal Intent, Gordon Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares and 24 Hours To Hell And Back, First Dates (Australia and UK), movies (family movies Fridays and Saturdays).