George Negus to quit SBS for TEN

By David Knox on October 8, 2010 / Filed Under News 32

EXCLUSIVE: George Negus will exit SBS at the end of the year to join Network TEN, leading to speculation he will front its new 6pm news-based programme.

Negus has fronted SBS international current affairs series Dateline for six years  as well has appearing on TEN’s 7PM Project in a mutual arrangement enjoyed by both networks. The appearances have helped give him a younger audience following. Now he will make a permanent move.

Negus is understood to have had a number of discussions with SBS Managing Director Shaun Brown about his future, but will continue with Dateline until the end of the year.

TEN is yet to reveal its presenter for the half-hour news-based programme that comprises its 6pm timeslot, but rumours of ABC’s Jennifer Byrne have been denied by TEN.

In a statement to SBS staff Negus said, “It has been both a personal and professional privilege to work with you all for the past six years. I’ve worked with great colleagues at Dateline, NACA, in the studio, the control room, wardrobe, make-up, the atrium, the café – even in Management!

“In the process, terrific friendships have been made that I’m sure will remain long after ‘the moustache has left the building.’”

With The Simpsons and Neighbours shifting to Eleven, TEN is investing heavily in the News landscape.

It plans to introduce a 30-minute national news program targeting viewers seeking “a smarter, more informed and insightful approach to the stories, issues, events and news-makers of the day.”

It will be followed by 30 minute local news editions with state-based hosts around the country including Sandra Sully and Mal Walden.

TEN is expected to confirm Negus’ appointment this weekend.

32 Comments »

  1. wade January 16, 2011 at 12:47 am -

    If Ten wants to push a faaaaar left agenda, then George Negus is your man, I certainly won’t be watching. And did this happen before Packer took over, surely not, Negus sucks…!

  2. Goonies October 11, 2010 at 3:52 pm -

    I think Jennifer has been out of the more serious side of things for too long and just doesn’t have that newsreader attitude anymore IMO.

    George good, Jennifer not so much.

  3. dave October 9, 2010 at 7:21 pm -

    Interesting, George is not really the funky and modern image that 10 likes to project, but he does bring an earthed, considered and experienced persona to a new program. Alone, i can’t see him or it, any differennt from his sbs or abc shows. He works really well on 7pm project – watching the space…..

  4. Cam Reed October 9, 2010 at 4:21 pm -

    @Kenny

    Why wouldn’t Negus be the Presenter/Auto-Cue Reader, pretty much what he does on Dateline now, fills in the story and cuts to the report., he’s not out in the field gathering stories now.

    Negus may have some Editorial control over what is shown and then present it and this may be the same deal he does with TEN (if TEN are as serious about this News Block as it seems).

  5. IronicReference October 9, 2010 at 12:47 pm -

    What about Jennifer as host and Hugh and Negus as the two senior reporters, providing 60 minutes-esque reports.

  6. Kenny October 9, 2010 at 12:09 pm -

    Can’t see George being just an autocue reader. He’s more likely to be a field reporter, but definitely more than a newsreader.
    “…speculation he will front its new 6pm news-based programme”. As Magaret Thatcher would say, “speculation by who” (or should that be “whom”?). Speculation by the uninformed playing guessing games?

  7. arcadia October 9, 2010 at 11:34 am -

    Is it a news bulletin at 6pm or a current affairs program?

  8. Alex October 9, 2010 at 10:43 am -

    People who think it would be good for Jennifer to anchor with George – bad idea, dual presenters on half hour bulletins don’t work in the two biggest TV markets of Sydney and Brisbane. Single presenter is better.

  9. Earthquake October 9, 2010 at 10:24 am -

    Since I’m not usually home for the 5pm news, this will get me watching the 6pm news for sure. I’m hoping for some good in depth interviews.

  10. steven October 9, 2010 at 9:43 am -

    I find him boring and really out of touch with today. Bad call Ten…

  11. Bass October 9, 2010 at 7:48 am -

    Wow very interesting, put Neugs in at 6 and replace him on 7pm with Ray Martin

  12. Mac October 9, 2010 at 12:34 am -

    @Mr. Do-Bee : Nice Propellerheads reference. :)

  13. BJ October 8, 2010 at 11:59 pm -

    I agree if they got both George Negus and Jennifer Byrne presenting together at 6 or 6.30pm that would sure as hell scare the bejesus out of 7 and 9 and give them a good run for their money. Then they would really show they are becoming a more serious network.

  14. Chris N. October 8, 2010 at 10:18 pm -

    That was pretty decent of SBS. Kudos to them :) As for George, I think the money is playing some role in this move. I do love him on 7PM though (in stark contrast to Steve Price). To be honest, I probably won’t be watching the new news anyway (2 hours is way too much and Simpsons ftw).

  15. Craig H October 8, 2010 at 9:45 pm -

    hes great, but i think i would still rather see Hugh Riminton get the 6pm gig….

  16. boganpride October 8, 2010 at 8:50 pm -

    So i take it. We wont be seeing any pro israel , liberal stories on ten’s nightly news?

  17. Brenton October 8, 2010 at 8:46 pm -

    He is 68, nearly 69 he will probably retire in the next 5 years or so.

  18. Mr. Do-Bee October 8, 2010 at 8:33 pm -

    It’s all just a little bit of history repeating. 20 years after Ten tried a serious half hour news bulletin at 6 with an original 60 reporter as reader…

    Don’t tell me they’re going to call it Ten Evening News.

  19. chk chk October 8, 2010 at 8:31 pm -

    I want Lee Lin Chin for Dateline, she should be given a 24-hour show I reckon!! :-)

  20. Michael October 8, 2010 at 8:23 pm -

    Makes sense both are extremely left wing!

  21. tom tom October 8, 2010 at 8:23 pm -

    Terrible choice. Awesome journalist, but not a presenter. Put him in a war zone, but not at a news desk.
    JANA!

  22. Secret Squïrrel October 8, 2010 at 8:19 pm -

    I’ve been a fan of George’s ever since the good ol’ days of Sixty Minutes (yes! it used to be good).

    “I can’t think of anyone who can fill George’s shoes.” – Depends on what you want them filled with.

  23. mikeys October 8, 2010 at 8:15 pm -

    Cool!

  24. Butters October 8, 2010 at 7:59 pm -

    @ Nick – why not? It’s an epic ‘stache.

  25. Johnson October 8, 2010 at 7:32 pm -

    Great choice. But who will host Dateline next year? I can’t think of anyone who can fill George’s shoes.

  26. TomK October 8, 2010 at 7:30 pm -

    imagine if negus and byrne presented at 6pm together, that would really scare 7 and 9 (and probably hurt their audience)
    i really hope he doesnt leave 7pm he is the best regular guess they have on the show.

  27. Anthony October 8, 2010 at 7:27 pm -

    I Knew it!

  28. Nick October 8, 2010 at 7:15 pm -

    He refers to himself as The Moustache?

  29. David P October 8, 2010 at 7:01 pm -

    Jenifer Byrne would be a big mistake in that timeslot. Her over the top “act” on the Book Club once a month is quite enough thankyou.

  30. Pam October 8, 2010 at 6:48 pm -

    Briiliant, excellent choice.. look forward to watching this news programme from 10

  31. IronicReference October 8, 2010 at 6:47 pm -

    If they got Byrne as well they’ll have a pretty impressive line-up. I find Negus a little lacking on 7pm but perhpas in a more formal news format he’ll be as good as he used to be. It’s hard to dislike him.

  32. Alex October 8, 2010 at 6:43 pm -

    Ten’s definitely taking this news expansion seriously. Who knows, we could have a new leading news network in a few years.

    George Negus is definitely good to have on board but to host a news program? He’s more current affairs host/reporter than news presenter.

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