Leigh Hart might be leaving a fulltime role hosting Radio Hauraki's Bhuja drive show, but his fanbase has no reason to fear.

Hart is set to focus on TV projects, including the third series of TVNZ chat show Late Night, Big Breakfast, alongside his former Bhuja co-host Jason Hoyte.

He's also working on a project called Moonflix, which he describes as "an online TV station". It will house content from his old series Moon TV and other existing projects, as well as new content coming out on a regular basis.

As you'd expect, this much TV demands time. Any decent TV show, he says, requires at least a week of uninterrupted time to create, and that is simply not doable with a daily radio show to contend with.


"It was time management," he says of his decision to leave. "I really enjoyed radio, but a year would go past pretty quick and I'd sudenly realise I hadn't done a couple of the things I was hoping to do. It got to the point where I'd had enough and I wanted to get back to my first love which, to be honest, is TV - and it's probably what I'm slightly probably better at anyway."

Radio is "becoming more visual" to meet online demands anyway, "so I aways thought if I was going to be doing that stuff, I might as well be doing them for TV and doing it properly. So it just seemed like the right time."

That said, Hart will still be involved with Radio Hauraki and its parent company NZME, which also owns the Herald. He plans to continue his work with the hugely popular Alternative Commentary Collective, and contributing to Hauraki's breakfast show with Matt Heath and Jeremy Wells.

The silver lining, he says, is that his Bhuja co-hosts Matt and Manaia might actually get their chance to shine, now that he's out of the way.

"I really enjoyed working with them in the last few months and, to be honest, I think they had a bit of a hospital pass almost, having to fill in with me... when really, I think when those two are by themselves they're actually better.

"I always thought it'd be great to give them a chance to show what they could actually do and hopefully they still get a chance to do that."

TV comedy duo Jono and Ben have been confirmed to take up the Hauraki drive spot, but not until April next year. Hart's last drive show will be tomorrow, November 1.

He says his greatest memories aren't of the celebrities he's interviewed or opportunities he's had. They are - "at the risk of sounding really cheesy" - the people.


"There were a couple of occasions where Jase [Hoyte] and I would get into that hysterical laughter situation that you might do when you're in primary school or something, where you're literally wetting your pants laughing, with tears coming down your eyes for like two-and-a-half minutes on the radio.

"When I think about it, it must've been ridiculously terrible radio, but it happened about half a dozen times and I couldn't even tell you why. Just meeting everyone and forming those relationships... just the vibe of the whole thing, that's the highlight.

"I think the point being was that we never took it too seriously and I think that's the way to approach it. To get out now is a good way of doing it I think, because it never really felt like a proper job, it's a whole lot of fun and its best to leave it that way I think."

The Late Night, Big Breakfast will air on TVNZ next March.