John Drinnan

Media writer for the New Zealand Herald

Seven Sharp launch date unveiled

Greg Boyed (left), Ali Mau and Jesse Mulligan will front  Seven Sharp . Photo / Supplied
Greg Boyed (left), Ali Mau and Jesse Mulligan will front Seven Sharp . Photo / Supplied

Details are emerging for Seven Sharp - the TV One Close Up replacement TVNZ confirmed it will launch on February 4.

TVNZ bosses said the format of the show would change with events, but a marketing source said the show will be built around short-sharp segments and be heavily oriented toward social media such as Facebook and Twitter.

Seven Sharp will be centred on the announced three main presenters - Alison Mau, Greg Boyed and Jesse Mulligan.

But the show is understood to be well resourced with several people on air including reporter Heather Du Plessis-Allan and a co-producer, Tim Wilson.

Wilson is the former New York correspondent who has been overseeing advertorial content at TVNZ's adverting operation, Black Sand.

TVNZ head of news and current affairs Ross Dagan said the Seven Sharp format would not be formulaic and would change according to events.

A marketing source said while Close Up was broken up into three segments, Seven Sharp might have up to eight short "bites" or segments with up to five people on the panel.

The new show will start two weeks after its TV3 competitor Campbell Live. A key sponsor, Korean car company Kia Motors, had until Friday to decide whether to renew its sponsorship it had for Close Up.

A TVNZ source said Kia decided not to be linked to Seven Sharp because of the format - which was more fast paced and youth oriented than Close Up.

New car buyers are traditionally from older demographics and it is understood Kia is looking at another sponsorship deal with TVNZ.

Aiming at a short sharp show linked to social media is ambitious for TVNZ - which has been trying to attract a younger audience for TV One.

However, the marketing source will be watching how the new fast-paced how goes down with older demographics, who have traditionally watched Close Up.

TVNZ will be hoping Seven Sharp lures people away from Campbell Live.

If Seven Sharp were successful, there was a danger was that it could take viewers away from Shortland Street on TV2.

- NZ Herald

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