EXCLUSIVE: 10’s Daniel Monaghan reveals Amazing Race back to international destinations, makes room for drama favourites, hints at new announcements and confirms 6 projects for Pilot Week.
After another wild ride in the so-called jungle, 10’s year is off and running led by fan favourite Australian Survivor: Blood v Water.
Now in its 7th season on 10, the show has amassed a loyal audience who praise the high quality by producers Endemol Shine Australia, in production values, casting, twists and gleaming-biceps host, Jonathan LaPaglia.
10’s Head of Programming Daniel Monaghan promises fans won’t be disappointed with the latest instalment.
“We’ve got a great mix of returning and new contestants and it is cracking. The dynamic of having couples is one of my favourite elements when it was on the US series. We have Sandra, Queen of Survivor, and her daughter. What’s not to love?” he teases.
“It’s such a good alternative to The Voice and the Olympics. We played against those last year, so it’s kind of deja vu.”
Filming took place in Charters Towers in stifling conditions, the second season following 2021’s Cloncurry Queensland season, ‘Brains v Brawn.’
“Last year was very dusty, very red. This has more water challenges, green trees, swimming holes. It’s a completely different look and obviously we kept it in Australia and in Queensland because we wanted to, to be honest, but also because we had to!”
“The fans who are playing …. are quite enamoured”
In the past, profile Survivor names such as Russell Hantz have been targeted and voted out early. Will the fans playing the game turn on their idol again?
“Regardless of whether they want them out early, the fans who are playing with someone as big as Russell or Sandra are quite enamoured. So you’ll have to wait and see.”
Ambulance Australia, also filmed in Queensland, returns after a year’s absence next Wednesday while new panel show, Would I Lie to You? Australia is set for Monday nights.
“It’s very, very funny. If you’re a UK fan you’re like this one. Chrissie Swan does a phenomenal job and as I understand it, she can’t lie because she’s the host. She drives the traffic very well and it’s very strong. Some of the guests will also surprise you.”
“We’ve got quite a number of people who are still dating, which is what we wanted”
First Dates Australia, previously a Seven title, screens soon. 10 viewers will notice some subtle changes in casting and location.
“We have a new setting, a new restaurant that looks entirely different. It’s a lot more urban in its flavour, shot in inner Western Sydney. Warner Bros. did a phenomenal job of casting the show for actual success, rather than just for laughs. We’ve got quite a number of people who are still dating, which is what we wanted from the end of the series,” he insists.
New observational series Dog House Australia is back in production and returning in Q1 whilst Gogglebox is coming to Thursdays in March for the first of its two new seasons.
In Q2 is ever-popular MasterChef: Foodies v Favourites, with returning contestants Alvin Quah, Sarah Todd, Michael Weldon and Season One winner, Julie Goodwin, plus new contenders.
“Can Julie do it again?”
“Can Julie do it again? That’s the question I get asked the most!” Monaghan reveals.
“Having three returning winners amongst the 12 Favourites is a pretty strong and compelling reason to watch, all these years later.”
But Monaghan is keeping his powder dry on big name guests or if there are travel destinations this season.
Ratings hit Have You Been Paying Attention? returns on Mondays, and newcomer The Cheap Seats on Tuesdays. Both will screen in tandem from Q2.
Season 2 of Lucy Lawless mystery My Life is Murder (previously on Acorn TV) will screen in Q2 and yes, Season 2 of Five Bedrooms (previously Paramount+) finally gets a broadcast too in Q3 with guest Rodger Corser. It’s every bit as enjoyable as S1, by writer Michael Lucas (The Newsreader) and Christine Bartlett (The Wrong Girl).
Also in Q3 is a new season of The Bachelor, a franchise which, after a challenging 2021, Monaghan acknowledges needs to evolve in 2022.
“We’ve still got a big base there that likes the brand”
“Casting is definitely one thing… evolving those storylines and how they are told is, is another. We do have our audience watching on separate platforms and younger viewers are moving to BVOD. Bachelor has always had a core audience of 35 to 55 year old women, particularly. So we’ve still got a big base there that likes the brand. But it is about making it surprising, evolving the look and feel and how the dates play out, so that it isn’t just painting by numbers each year,” he insists.
“That is all on the cards for this year, 100%.”
The Bachelorette also returns in 2022 along with The Masked Singer, both from Warner Bros. Australia.
New series Hunted to be filmed out of Melbourne, sees ordinary Australians on the run, attempting to avoid a crack team of expert hunters. Endemol Shine Australia is producing.
“It’s the most popular show that gets talked about from our announcements”
“Hunted is a short-run series but a massive undertaking with huge production values. It’s quite funny too, if you’ve ever watched the British one. The Italian one looks phenomenally beautiful so we’ll be aiming for that,” he explains.
“You can lean on people who are in your life to try and help you hide, but everyone is treated as though they are actual fugitives.
“It’s the most popular show that gets talked about from our announcements.”
Production is yet to commence in Melbourne, and will be filmed without a host.
And in good news, The Amazing Race Australia will return to international destinations.
“Amazing Race will film globally. We’ve got a bit of time before we have to travel but it will be global routes. We did Australia at the beginning of last year and this year as the world opens up we will with it,” he confirms.
Q4 for 10 is yet to be locked down, but Monaghan teases new announcements are around the corner.
“We haven’t announced any shows for Q4 yet. We have commissioned one show we’re not ready to talk about,” he reveals.
“Last year Celebrity MasterChef did a solid job for us so we need to work out how we fill that footprint… and we’ve already commissioned something between Amazing Race and Hunted.”
Director of Programming, Daniel Monaghan
Todd Sampson returns with a new factual series, while Rob Collins hosts NITV co-production First Inventors later in the year.
“We do have two that we’re pushing to announce”
Meanwhile The Secrets She Keeps, whilst renewed earlier, does not have a production date as yet and isn’t on the 2022 slate.
“Obviously we’re relying on the availability of international cast,” says Monaghan.
“But we do have two that we’re pushing to announce, hopefully one for the back of this year, one maybe early next year.”
One is “very noisy” and one is for Paramount+.
Not returning are The Cube or How to Stay Married while there is no confirmation for Territory Cops or the long-running Bondi Rescue.
10 brands 10 News First, The Project, The Living Room returning to 10 Pyrmont studios, and Studio 10 all continue.
Finally, Pilot Week, held over in 2020 and 2021 is back in 2022, with new shows likely to follow MasterChef episodes.
Monaghan says there are 6 new projects for Pilot Week.
“You’ll probably hear about those in February or March as we film the last two, just to make sure that everything gets away.
“It’s a really good mix this year, and good talent.”