The AFI / Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts confirmed the broadcast yesterday, for January 30th at the Event Centre at The Star, Sydney. This represents a switch from Nine, following many years of the AFI Awards plus last year’s inaugural event at the Sydney Opera House.
AFI / AACTA CEO, Damian Trewhella, said, “We are delighted to have partnered with Network TEN, which shares many of our objectives. Network TEN has clearly stated and is enacting a commitment to producing quality Australian television, a commitment which sees the Network nominated for nine AACTA Awards across reality, drama and telefeature productions, including the critically and publically acclaimed series, Puberty Blues.”
“The AACTA Awards are Australia’s highest peer-assessed screen Awards, which open many doors for Australia’s best screen practitioners both at home and abroad.
“Whilst it’s important that we continue to hold an appropriately prestigious event to honour this significant achievement, the Awards of the Australian Academy must be accessible to all.
“Australian TV drama and reality productions have dominated network schedules within the last year, and audience numbers have shown that Australians are hungry for quality local content. Equally, Australian cinema has been outstanding, with films such as The Sapphires achieving critical, audience and box office success.
“Therefore, this year’s AACTA Awards show will celebrate the film and television moments that have captured the nation’s imagination over the last year, whilst also providing outstanding live performances and light-hearted moments to entertain audiences in the room and watching at home. In the coming weeks we will reveal more about the show’s exciting line up of talent, headlined by one of Australia’s most popular performers, Hugh Sheridan,” Trewhella said.
AACTA President, Geoffrey Rush, added, “I have just spent five months with Hugh on A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum and I know he has proved himself to be a playful and frighteningly adventurous stage animal with a wisdom beyond his years. As Host at this year’s AACTA Awards in Sydney, Hugh not only brings his phenomenal vocal talents to the stage in our new show format, but also headlines an amazing array of new generation talent that Australia seems to consistently produce.”
Hugh Sheridan said: “It’s a lovely moment when a hero, Geoffrey Rush, who you have admired growing up, gives you an opportunity like this. Every day I feel honoured to work in our Australian arts community, and to front the AACTA Awards is a gift I will relish.
“I acknowledge the bar set by former hosts of the AFI and AACTA Awards, including screen icons such as Russell Crowe, Hugh Jackman and Geoffrey Rush, and I am delighted to be involved with a new show format which I hope audiences find entertaining, as we celebrate Australian talent and screen excellence.’’
Beverley McGarvey, Chief Programming Officer of TEN said: “It is a privilege for the network to be involved in honouring such a strong year of Australian film and television by broadcasting the AACTA Awards in January. The quality of local storytelling was outstanding in 2012, and was received by an enthusiastic Australian public eager for homegrown stories. The AACTA Awards celebrate these achievements and in the expert hands of Geoffrey and Hugh, we expect it to be a great.”
Nominees for the International Awards will be announced later this week, and the recipients will be announced in Los Angeles in late January.