First published in New Zealand TV Weekly August 22, 1966.
Hard to say anything about the various pirate schemes afoot here at present, they’re changing day by day. At the time of writing, four radio pirates and two TV freebooters have been sighted on the horizon. Best bet is that only Radio Hauraki, the first in the field. is likely to sail-but it could be killed through the activities of the others. On the TV front, speculation is that Japanese interests could again be behind the main starter. The chain- of-thought deduction goes this way: The mouthpiece is a lawyer in partner- ship with the Mayor; the Mayor’s publicity campaign at the election was run by a PR firm, a partner in which was the spokesman for Japanese TV interests when the idea of a free enterprise station was first mooted two or three years back.... Party, of touring New Zealand editors report back that they were taken to lunch with major British national asset, Diana Rigg. Auburn hair and false eyelashes, they say ..... Joyce Cronin pointing out the little heaps of borer dust under an antique piece at a recent auction. . . . Norm Keesing has left the sports section.... Reynolds TV busy doing studio sound films of The Chicks and Larry’s Rebels for Australian promotional use. Other pop groups likely to follow suit.... Sandy Edmondes being dogged by misquotations from a Sydney inter- view ..... Second birthday party had to be laid on for the Lawson quins so that TV could have its coverage after the newspaper monopoly had its contractural lead ..... Noticed while in Sydney this week that Chef Graham Kerr has lowered the boom on his show and gone off to Surfers to rest. Overwork may mean he drops less lucrative series, such as anything for NZBC.
Producer John Miles is working hard on the still unnamed youth show (it was labelled Tempo 66 at one stage, but that has been dropped) and hopes to start getting some film in the can by early September. Each show will run 30 minutes. Ideas lined up for the first few are ice-skating, and ice hockey, the art of self-defence, motoring including motor sport, yachting and flying. John has still to find a front man for the programme. He will aim it mainly at young people, but hopes it will interest others as well. . . NZBC feeling its way with native drama. Anniversary Day slightly better than earlier efforts, say local viewers, but only slightly . . . Next locally-made drama is Maurice Shadbolt’s Down by the Cool Sea, already in the can, and due to be screened shortly ..... Brian Bell, in charge of drama productions, has had a good response to the letters he sent out to New Zealand authors asking if they would be interested in writing plays for NZTV. All responded favourably, and contracts are now going out. NZBC is reported to be oflering three figure fees for the plays. Authors said to be interested include David Ballantyne, Maurice Shadbolt, Errol Brathwaite, James K. Baxter, Ian Cross, Noel Hilliard and Graham Billing among others. It will probably be a year before these works come to local screens.
Well-known CHTV3 producer Bill Taylor has been working on what must probably be regarded as one of the toughest assignments television has tackled so far in this country. plans for telecasting the consecration of Dean W. Allan Pyatt as Bishop of Christchurch on August 24. Taylor spent the greater part of July digesting the order of service and movements of the Six bishops taking purt in terms of camera shots. three cameras eras are being used, two on specifically built towers at the main entrance to the Cathedral and the other over the choir pews in the sanctuary, while the third camera is mobile. Taylor’s big problem has been to ensure that nothing intrudes or interferes to detract from the solemnity of the occasion. . . Linda MacDougall returned from her background production course in Wellington mid-August to handle the children’s productions at CHTV3. Taylor, who filled in with a series of Get-Together while she was on the course, is returning to his special field of documentaries and will probably be working on the West Coast gold rush production with former BBC man Michael Scott ..... Auckland visitor "in the know” reports that, after some tuition and grooming from their public relations man, Gordon Dryden, at least some of Labour’s candidates tor the November election are beginning lo look like TV material.
At long last Town and Around is under way on DNTV2, but it’s still too soon to tell whether it will be as successful as those in other centres. The first few editions suffered from trying too hard to achieve the off- beat sparkle and humour that apparently has distinguished sister Town and Around's; And the Town was not nearly as prominent as the Around, with excerpts from Wellington and Auckland taking up fifty per cent of the show on one occasion. Still, we must give them time to settle down, before giving a firm yea or nay..... Caught: Keith Tayles, TV technician, has joined the ranks of those-about-to-be-married ..... Judy Pate, is far from the cripple rumour had her to be. Not only did she sing and dancein the lead of “On Your Toes" for Songs from the Shows, but she also danced in the chorus of “White Horse Inn" in the same series. But alas, Judy's talents and unusual Eastern type beauty, will no longer be available to DNTV2 producers and audiences. She has a transfer to Wellington. Department of coincidences-that’s where her fiance is.... Broadcasting’s Studio Players did very nicely thank you in the local British Drama League Festival Their production, “The Insect Play,” was placed second in the A grade section, entitling them to perform in the divisional finals in Ashburton last weekend. With all the cast part of the seven-day-week organisation- that broadcasting is, this means some considerable arranging of rosters. At the time of writing, no one seems quite sure whether they’ll be able to get there or not ..... Roy Melford has mixed feelings about his new post as chief producer at WNTV1. He’s happy about the job, but reluctant to leave Dunedin-
a marvellous place.