Darren McMullen and Renee Bargh find their Voices
Presenter and actor Darren McMullen will return to The Voice as co-host for its 2020 season, Nine has confirmed. McMullen previously hosted the first four seasons of the show, as well as its spin-off series, The Voice Kids. He will be joined by former Channel V presenter Renee Bargh, who will return from her LA-based gig co-hosting Extra to take up duties on The Voice. The pair are replacing Sonia Kruger, who hosted the show over the last five years and has returned to the Seven Network. Production on the series will shift this year to a purpose-built studio in western Sydney; Nine, which owns this masthead, has confirmed 2019’s coaches Boy George, Kelly Rowland, Guy Sebastian and Delta Goodrem will all return for the new season.
Gavin & Stacey special episode sets TV ratings records
In a powerful case for long-arc audience tracking, the Gavin & Stacey special episode broadcast in the UK at Christmas has stretched its live viewing audience of 11.5 million to 17.1 million, the BBC has reported. The astonishing numbers position the special as the most-watched TV program in the UK since 2010. (The record, 17.7 million viewers, was previously held by a season final of talent show The X-Factor.) The Gavin & Stacey special, the first written by creators James Corden and Ruth Jones in a decade, also drew 4.4 million replays on the BBC’s iPlayer streaming platform.
Legendary newsman Jim Lehrer dies
Legendary American newscaster Jim Lehrer has died; he was 85. In the US Lehrer was one of the enduring faces of public television news, as a presenter on the PBS network. Australian audiences knew him from SBS broadcasts of the MacNeil-Lehrer NewsHour, one of PBS’s flagship programs in the 1980s and 1990s. Lehrer, who was respected as one of American broadcasting’s most ethical journalists, was born in Kansas and studied journalism at the University of Missouri. Prior to his work on PBS, Lehrer worked for The Dallas Morning News and the Dallas Times Herald.