The Diary: Anna confronts her demons

Anna Guy talks openly about why she dumped her husband, who was acquitted of her brother's murder. Photo / APN
Anna Guy talks openly about why she dumped her husband, who was acquitted of her brother's murder. Photo / APN

Anna Guy's first television role - one of three self-styled reports - will debut on TV3's new flagship current affairs show 3rd Degree on Wednesday night.

Insiders say it's a deeply intimate insight by the woman whose personal tragedy captivated the nation.

Guy, with the help of TV3 producer Phill Prendeville, provides a frank and personal account of what she's been through and how she's moving on with her life.

She films her move to Auckland with her four children, saying goodbye to Feilding friends, and talks openly about why she dumped Ewen Macdonald, her husband of 10 years who was acquitted of her brother's murder.

Macdonald was charged with other offences and jailed in Manawatu Prison. He was transferred last week to Christchurch Prison.

Brent Jameson, Guy's new boyfriend, with whom she shares a house on the North Shore with her four children, is the new man in her life. It's understood he appears on the show, too, as do Guy's parents, Joanne and Bryan.

However, Kylee Guy, Anna's sister-in-law and the widow of her murdered brother Scott, is apparently conspicuously absent. Friends of the women say there's no love lost between them.

Anna told The Diary last year her ambition was to get into broadcasting. Luckily, TV3 provided a kick start. An interview with Guy on the network's 60 Minutes show in September drew an audience of more than 400,000 and TV3 was, understandably, keen to capitalise on that.

But the show's executive producer, Terrence Taylor, told The Diary while this style of report is a departure from what they've done before (with Guy playing reporter herself), it's no less compelling.

"This is a woman whose husband was accused of murdering her brother. New Zealanders are fascinated by Anna, and why not cover her? The way she has re-established her life is fascinating."

But will she make good TV viewing? "She's a natural performer, so there's no problem there," he said.

The following two reports, "which will be less about her", are yet to be filmed.

Derby Day darlings

Fingers are crossed the rain won't fall tomorrow for the TV3 Derby Day at Ellerslie Racecourse - it has the past four years.

Umbrellas were definitely the accessory du jour last year when hats and designer shoes should have been the focus. Tomorrow's Derby Day is the fashion highlight of Auckland Cup Week. The who's who and the fashionably fabulous arrive in their glad rags.

Who can we expect? Organisers say TV stars from the Almighty Johnsons and the Blue Rose will be sipping bubbly in the luxury of the Gucci private suite and members of Sir John Kirwan's Blues rugby team are expected to make an appearance.

On Wednesday - Auckland Cup Day - the judges from NZ's X Factor show are said to be taking time off from auditions to sit trackside.

Organisers say the annual week-long event is a big contributor to the local economy, but won't speculate to exactly what extent.

"People come up from all around the country for Auckland Cup Week and they're spending large," ARC director of racing Andrew Butch-Castles told The Diary.

"It's New Zealand's most prestigious racing carnival and Derby Day is our most prestigious race. It's the week that the most money is spent and the most money goes back into the pockets of those in the industry. It's the chance to compete for the biggest payday."

Butch-Castles says it's not just the chance to see and be seen.

"Racing tourists come over for this. There are 24 people from Brisbane Racing Club coming from Australia for the event. They're spending six days in the city and will eat, drink and be merry at Ellerslie. It's not just a party, it's a business."

Move over Judge Judy

Former broadcaster Linda Clark is one of a string of names being touted as a possible adjudicator on TV3's The Vote, an NZ on Air-funded national referendum show which will screen at the end of each month in the same time slot as 3rd Degree.

Current affairs bosses won't reveal who'll play the lead role as judge alongside hosts Duncan Garner and Guyon Espiner, but told The Diary it will go to a "quick-witted female who is older than the hosts and has more experience in broadcasting, politics and the judiciary".

Clark is an obvious choice, as are Mai Chen, Kim Hill, Deborah Coddington, Jenny Shipley and Anita McNaught.

Debates will take place in auditoriums and school halls around the country with Garner and Espiner leading opposing teams in a bid to win over the theatre and television audience. They'll have the help of high-profile outspoken experts.

Steve Price Night of Courage

The glittering gala dinner tonight at Alexandra Park, hosted by former Warriors captain Steve Price in aid of the Child Cancer Foundation, is set to be a celebrity-packed affair. CCF ambassador Amanda Billing and fellow Shorty St actress Jacqueline Nairn are hosting a table, as are Silver Fern buds Katrina Grant and Casey Williams. Megan Alatini and Joe Cotton will entertain and Pricey will shave his head for the good cause with All Black Jerome Kaino. No word on whether the facial growth is coming off, too.

- NZ Herald

Rachel Glucina is New Zealand’s reigning gossip queen, notorious for breaking celebrity scoops and dishing dirt on the country’s best known personalities. She’s feared. She’s loathed. She’s courted by anyone with skeletons in their closet. Rachel knows where the bodies are buried. Mick Jagger wined and dined her. Mike McRoberts devoted a chapter to her in his memoirs. And John Key has her on speed dial.

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