Last week, some of our team were amongst 650 people who attended TVNZ’s annual Showcase event in Auckland, which celebrated programming successes from this year; and announced some new content coming to a screen near you in 2019.
TVNZ’s focus for the coming year is on bringing the ‘moments that matter’ to New Zealanders – hit local shows; big live events and building momentum for their OnDemand platform. This renewed focus includes a much larger investment in live sporting content than has been the case in many years – spear-headed by their partnership with Spark for Rugby World Cup 2019.
“Local content is in our DNA and it’s the building block of our line-up. We’re turning local programming up a notch, with ambitious new dramas featuring the biggest Kiwi names, side-splitting comedy that appeals to our unique sense of humour, and high-entertainment reality.” said Director of Content Cate Slater.
Sunday Theatre will return, with titles including Runaway Millionaires, Ablaze and War Stories premiering next year.
Factual titles How Not To Get Cancer, That’s A Bit Racist and The Check Up were also announced, to screen on TVNZ 1. And TVNZ 2 is bringing back Celebrity Treasure Island for a new generation.
Fan-favourite Wellington Paranormal will be back on TVNZ 2, while Cold Case and The Casketeers will also return to TVNZ 1.
TVNZ’s OnDemand’s offering will also include a stronger focus on local content; with new series including millennial murder mystery Find My Killer, unscripted comedy The Educators and documentary series The Price of $ex.
Also commissioned exclusively for OnDemand are the brand new local reality format House of Drag and Re-Fresh, a spin-off of the local series Fresh.
And the second season of local favourite Heartbreak Island will be coming to OnDemand first; before screening on TVNZ 2.
TVNZ is Spark’s free-to-air partner for the Rugby World Cup. The 36th America’s Cup regatta will also broadcast exclusively on TVNZ. These two major events supported by February’s T20 Black Clash, demonstrate TVNZ’s growing commitment to bringing sporting action back to New Zealanders for free.
Live event programming will extend beyond the sports arena in 2019 with The Grammy Awards, and The Academy Awards screening on TVNZ for the first time in over a decade.
While the focus is firmly on local properties, international shows will continue to sit alongside homegrown productions.
The Luminaries, based on Eleanor Catton’s Man Booker prize winning novel, comes from the BBC; and also from the BBC will be a brand new adaptation of H. G. Wells’ sci-fi classic War of the Worlds.
From the US, new shows include Whiskey Cavalier, starring Scott Foley, Flack starring Anna Paquin, and My Life Is Murder, starring Lucy Lawless.
New spy drama The Little Drummer Girl will be fast-tracked to OnDemand. Starring Emmy-winner Alexander Skarsgard, Oscar-nominee Michael Shannon and BAFTA nominee Florence Pugh, The Little Drummer Girl is a deeply immersive spy thriller based on the John le Carre novel of the same name.
OnDemand drama content will also include the George Clooney produced and directed adaptation of Catch 22, HBO’s adaptation of the Elena Ferrante novel My Brilliant Friend, the Australian footballers wives series Playing For Keeps, the rebooted Roswell, New Mexico, the second season of Killing Eve and the upcoming Richard Gere-led series MotherFatherSon.