TVNZ is making a big announcement tomorrow about its OnDemand streaming service before a Hollywood-style celebration bash for its A-listers.
Staff were given an early heads-up on Friday at a virtual meeting for an "exciting update coming for TVNZ OnDemand".
Whispers in the industry about tomorrow's announcement are leaning towards a new partnership with a Hollywood studio or streaming service for TVNZ OnDemand.
Former chief executive Kevin Kenrick confirmed in May last year TVNZ would introduce a paid service that would offer ad-free viewing. It would be in addition to its advertising-funded OnDemand service. It had informed the Government of its intentions but no date had been put on a launch.
The networks celebration party on Wednesday for glammed-to-the-max A-listers and guests is at St Matthew-in-the-City on Wednesday night and TVNZ are promising massive celebrations of it all.
The event is billed as More is More, a network premiere with TVNZ, and the network will be rolling out the red carpet for more than 400 guests and its own Who's Who stars.
Guests are promised an event fit for Hollywood, with more drinking, more dancing, more music — both live and with a DJ — and more surprises than you can shake a tail feather at.
Stars attending from TVNZ's stable of shows include Hilary Barry and Jeremy Wells, Jack Tame, Miriama Kamo, Bree Tomasel, Pax Assadi, James Mustapic, Laura Daniel and Sam Wallace, as well as casts from Shortland Street and Celebrity Treasure Island Season 2 and more.
TVNZ wouldn't say the exact meaning of More is More, but hinted that what's in the wind is a big deal, and that all will be revealed after an announcement tomorrow.
All eyes will be on TVNZ's new CEO Simon Power who took over from Kenrick in March after 10 years with Westpac, where he was most recently acting CEO. Power, a former National Cabinet minister, also chairs the board of governors at exclusive King's College in Auckland. Wednesday's shindig will be his first chance for a meet-and-greet and with a big media contingent expected.
The celebration will be a welcome distraction to TVNZers after the recent "Breakfastgate" woes following the sudden departure of one of the show's hosts Kamahl Santamaria.
Santamaria's old colleague from Al Jazeera, TVNZ's head of News, Paul Yurisich, is on self-imposed leave until the matter is sorted.