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Les Norton series begins filming for ABC

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ABC’s 10-part drama series Les Norton began filming last week in Sydney.

Les Norton stars Rebel Wilson (Isn’t It RomanticPitch PerfectBridesmaids), David Wenham (Romper StomperTop of the Lake) and up and coming Australian actor Alexander Bertrand (Australian GangsterHyde & Seek) in the eponymous lead role.

Set in 1985, the series follows the exploits of Les Norton, a country bloke from outback Queensland. On the run from a troubled past, he blows into Sydney where he lands a job as a bouncer at a notorious illegal casino in Kings Cross. A classic fish out of water who’s desperate to get home, he soon finds himself seduced by the city’s illicit charms and dragged into a web of underground criminality.

The series, based on the best-selling novels by Robert G. Barrett, is a Roadshow Rough Diamond production for ABC Television. Sonar Entertainment is handling international distribution.

Joining Rebel, David and Alexander will be Hunter Page-Lochard (Cleverman), Steve Le Marquand (Wentworth), Syd Zygier (Romper Stomper), Pallavi Sharda (Pulse), Justin Rosniak (Animal Kingdom) and Kate Box (Rake).

Les Norton is being directed by Jocelyn Moorhouse (The DressmakerProof), Fadia Abboud (Australian Gangster), David Caesar (Dead Lucky, Underbelly) and Morgan O’Neill (Drift, Solo). It has been created for television by Morgan O’Neill, working alongside writers Christopher Lee (Paper Giants: The Birth of Cleo), Samantha Winston (Wentworth), Shanti Gudgeon (Wolf Creek), Malcolm Knox (Romper Stomper), and Jessica Tuckwell.

Producers are Daniel Edwards and John Edwards from production company Roadshow Rough Diamond, who produced 2017 drama series Romper Stomper and the upcoming series Australian Gangster.  Executive Producers are ABC Head of Drama, Comedy & Indigenous Sally Riley, the ABC’s Andrew Gregory; Deeper Water Films’ John Schwarz and Michael Schwarz, and John Singleton and Jack Singleton.

Les Norton is a Roadshow Rough Diamond production for the ABC. Major production investment from Screen Australia and the ABC, in association with Create NSW. International sales by Sonar Entertainment Distribution.

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Mastermind 2020 Grand Final Will finally air Mon 15 Feb on SBS

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It’s been almost a year but the 2020 Mastermind champion will finally be crowned on Monday 15 Feb at 6.00pm on SBS. The following week sees the return of the series proper with a new host in the shape of journalist Marc Fennell.

Jennifer Byrne returns one last time as quizmaster for finals week before handing over the reins to Walkley-winning journalist, Marc Fennell, who will helm the third season from Monday 22 February. Marc, best known for The Feed (SBS) and Download This Show (ABC), is no stranger to Mastermind having jumped into the iconic quizmaster seat for a short but successful stint in 2019.

Marc Fennell said: “I think Mastermind is a genuine insight into Australia’s psyche. Every one of us has that one obsession, that one thing we know and love above all things. The best part of being the quizmaster is seeing the wild diversity of obsessions and topics that the contenders bring with them. But make no mistake, it is the toughest quiz show on Australian television. I’ve been both a fill-in host and celebrity contender on Mastermind Australia, I know first-hand how intimidating it can be. While I may be the one holding the questions, I truly marvel at the gumption of the contenders. It’s going to be intense.”

SBS Commissioning Editor, Josh Martin, said: “It’s been a long wait, but we’re thrilled to finally be presenting the 2020 Mastermind winner. Jennifer has expertly quizzed contenders since we re-launched Mastermind to Australian audiences in 2019. She leant the show her considerable intellect, warmth and authority and we thank her for the instrumental role she has played in the show’s success. We’re excited that the quizmaster baton will be passed on to SBS’s own Marc Fennell, no stranger himself to the Mastermind hosting role, who will bring his own unique style and energy to this one-of-a-kind quiz show.”

After a season of speciality subjects such as Lady Gaga, the Nimitz UFO Sighting, Sydney architecture, the Stolen Generation, Donald Glover, Aussie slang, the history of European beers, the comedies of Shakespeare and nuts (just to name a few), it is down to 16 contenders competing in the Season 2 finals.

Specialist subjects for finals week will include the Kokoda Track Campaign, The Wombat, Monty Python’s Life of Brian, The Kingkiller Chronicle, Casablanca, Ozzy Osborne, Joan of Arc and the Spike Milligan War Memoirs.

Running for nearly 50 years on the BBC in the UK, Mastermind is an addictive global phenomenon, originally inspired by creator Bill Wright’s experiences of being interrogated by the Gestapo during World War II and captured on screen using a spotlight, black chair and rapid-fire questioning.

Mastermind is produced for SBS by BBC Studios.

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Married At First Sight Grand Reunion Sun & Mon on 9

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The highly anticipated Married at First Sight Grand Reunion will air over two big nights on Sunday, January 31, at 7.00pm and Monday, February 1, at 7.00pm on Nine and 9Now. The second part of the reunion has been brought forward a week in a bid to spoil the fun of two big premieres on Monday, The Amazing Race on 10 and Holey Moley on Seven.

Sparks fly as some of the most memorable brides and grooms from past seasons gather for the reunion of all reunions. The MAFS favourites revisit the infamous dinner party table and the tell-all confession couch when they all get together for the first time since leaving the experiment – and it’s a television event not to be missed.

Old flames reunite, friendships are formed, and broken ones mended, past conflicts resurface, redemption is earned and after all this time, people are held accountable for their actions.

In part one of the reunion, airing Sunday at 7.00pm, the dinner table is set to host Dean Wells, Tracey Jewel, Cyrell Paule, Ines Basic, Jessika Power, Martha Kalifatidis, Michael Brunelli, Sarah Roza, Nasser Sultan, Troy Delmege, Ashley Irvin, Mike Gunner, Charlene Perera, Jo McPharlin, Ryan Gallagher, Lizzie Sobinoff and Sebastian Guilhaus.

In part two of the reunion, Monday at 7.00pm,the group will join MAFS relationship experts John Aiken and Mel Schilling when they catch up with each participant and see what they’ve been doing since we last saw them in the experiment. They will also talk about what happened at the reunion dinner party the week before. Plenty of laughs will be had and lots of tears shed as they reflect on their life changing experience during the experiment and see what they’ve learned in life and love.

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Scifi anthology Soulmates Premieres Mon 8 Feb on Amazon Prime

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Intriguing Scifi anthology series Soulmates will get its Australian Premiere on Monday 8 February 2021 on Amazon Prime.

The six parter is created by William Bridges and the impressive cast list includes Kingsley Ben-Adir, Betsy Brandt, Shamier Anderson, David Costabile, Bill Skarsgård, Patrick Bayele, Charlie Heaton, Malin Akerman, Laia Costa and our own Sarah Snook.

The series, which is set 15 years in the future, takes a look at what happens to relationships when a new test comes out that tells who you, without doubt, who your soul mate is.

Happy couples are forced to question if their relationship is enough and predetermined soulmates start to disrupt existing marriages – this series follows the lives of six people through six different stories, each cast separately but each telling the story of how they are all impacted by the Soulsmate test, leaving them with the question of whether the cost of finding true love is truly worth it.

Soulmates is on Monday 8 Feb on Amazon Prime.

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