July: ABC + SBS TV and Australian Commercial TV Highlights


In this post I’ll highlight July’s Australian ABC TV + SBS TV and commercial TV show highlights and schedule changes


SBS TV Highlights

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Third Series of Newstopia 🙂

A third series of Shaun Micallef’s Newstopia has been commissioned by SBS and is likely to be on TV in October 2008.

Throughout July – Tour de France (Sport)

In its 18th year showcasing the Tour de France, the worlds most prestigious and celebrated cycling event, SBS will broadcast more LIVE action than ever before.

Viewers Australia wide will enjoy an increase in the LIVE stage coverage with SBS broadcasting from the earlier time of 10:00pm (AEST) most evenings. The Tour de France begins on SBS at 10:00pm (AEST) Saturday 5 July and ends early Monday morning, 28 July on the Champs-Élysées.

Host Michael Tomalaris returns to cover his 13th Tour for SBS and reporter, John Flynn, will report on all the news and stories from France. Former pro-cyclist, David McKenzie, joins the presentation team as an expert cycling analyst. Internationally renowned cycling commentary duo, Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwen, will provide race commentary.

Each day SBS will show a morning update of all the overnight action at 7:15am and a half hour highlights program at 6:00pm. French Chef, Gabriel Gate, returns to host ‘Taste le Tour’, a three minute mouth-watering segment showcasing French culinary delights along the 2008 Tour de France route.

SBS has an official comprehensive Tour de France website featuring breaking news 24/7, profiles of all 21 stages including route maps and stage analysis, exclusive video content, minute-by-minute live stage reports, complete results and race standings, expert blogs, recipes and much more.

Sunday 6 July 8.30pm – Car of the Future (Documentary)

If you put all of the cars in the world bumper to bumper, they would circle the Earth about 100 times. Presently, over 95% of America’s transport system is fuelled by Petroleum and despite concerns about its limited supply and the damage it causes to the environment, Petroleum is still being used it at an accelerating rate.

On Sunday, 6 July at 8.30pm, SBS Television will screen Car of the Future – a light hearted documentary hosted by the wacky brothers Tom and Ray Magliozzi, who consider some of the more serious implications of our reliance on Petroleum. It’s not all doom and gloom though, and Car of the Future reveals some of the modern designs and ideas currently being tested by governments, car manufacturers and scientists, who are working towards creating a car which better meets the needs of the future.


Tuesday 8 July 8.30pm – Bill Gates: How a Geek Changed The World (CUTTING EDGE Documentary)

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation aims to improve the quality of life for people in the US and around the globe, with a focus on tackling health problems in the developing world and improving access to drugs.

The program is set up to tell the definitive story of Bill Gates and Microsoft, including views from friends, colleagues and critics. It will look in more detail at some of the most important episodes and turning points in the company’s history right up to date, including the recent bid for Yahoo! and an examination of the challenges currently facing Microsoft, as well as Bill’s future work with the Foundation.

Tuesday, 15 July 7.30pm – Chining Me (Documentary)

As the world’s gaze turns to China for the 2008 Olympic Games, SBS Television will screen Chining Me on Tuesday, July 15 at 7.30pm. An unusual documentary, Chining Me blends fiction and reality to reveal a refreshingly light and intimate side to some of China’s unique social customs, interesting cuisine options and bizarre sleeping habits.

Chining Me begins when Roger, a Spanish businessman is sent by his boss to open a production facility in Beijing. Upon arrival, Roger soon discovers his boss has been tricked, and that there are no facilities to open. When Roger delivers the bad news to his boss, he is fired. Rather than returning home to look for work, Roger decides he would rather stay and explore China. The documentary then becomes a sort of road movie through China, and presents an uninhibited portrait of daily life.

Tuesday 15 & 22 July 15 8.30pm – Young and Restless in China (CUTTING EDGE Documentary)

Young and Restless in China presents an intimate portrait of nine young Chinese over the course of four years, examining the reality of their lives against the backdrop of a country that is changing daily. They are Westernised, savvy about today’s world, ambitious and often torn between their culture and their aspirations. In a country once dominated by Maoism, Williams found that many young adults in China today want to grab new opportunities as fast as they can.

Begins Wednesday 16 July (6-Part Series) 8.00pm – mY Generation (Documentary)

This six-part series puts Australian youth under the microscope to reveal what they really think and feel about the big issues; religion, politics, adulthood, housing and community engagement.


Begins Friday 18 July (3-Part Series) 7.30pm – Paris (Documentary)

Art historian and passionate Parisian, Sandrine Voillet, uncovers some of the hidden delights of the City of Lights in Paris.

Paris explores the history, beauty and bohemian soul of one of the world’s most romantic and mysterious cities. Among those who help Sandrine in her explorations are various locals including fashion designer Christian Lacroix, actress Jane Birkin and Olivier Picasso.

Friday 18 July 8.30pm – Space Hackers (Documentary)

In the 1950s, two young brothers, Achille and Giovanbattista Judica-Cordiglia, were amateur radio and cinema enthusiasts, messing around with their equipment in their home in Tornio. On the night of October 4, 1957, the USSR launched their first man-made satellite, Sputnik 1 and the lives of the two brothers changed irrevocably.

One night, in 1961, prior to Yuri Gagarin’s historical mission, they recorded something quite different from the usual static – heavy laboured breathing and a strained heartbeat. The pair had picked up the sounds of a Russian cosmonaut only seconds before his death.

As the two superpowers, the USA and the USSR sought to gain technological, military and ideological supremacy, the two brothers kept on recording the developments in the Cold War space race.

Today, in a society that takes global communication for granted, Achille and Giovanbattista’s pioneering work has been largely forgotten. Yet their incredible private archive, made up of unique audio-recordings and 8mm and Super 8mm films remains a testament to their enthusiasm, talent and curiosity.

Many of the Movies and TV series mentioned in this article can be bought from Chaos DVDs

ABC1 TV Highlights

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Sunday, 06 July 8:30PM – Valentine’s Day

Valentine’s Day tells the story of Ben Valentine (Rhys Muldoon) who drifts into the small Victorian country town of Rushworth. He quickly finds himself in trouble with the law. As a famous Aussie Rules footballer fallen on hard times, he is given 200 hours of community service coaching the town’s ‘no-hoper’ football team. But is he in fact who he seems to be?

TV show of the monthWednesday, 09 July 9:30PM – The Hollowmen

The Hollowmen is a new six-part political comedy/drama set in the offices of the Central Policy Unit, a special think tank personally set up by the Prime Minister to help him in the most important job of all – getting re-elected. Their brief is “long term vision”; to stop worrying about tomorrow’s headlines, and focus on next week’s.

Created and produced by Working Dog, the series features an impressive cast including Rob Sitch and Santo Cilauro of Frontline fame

Written and conceived by Santo Cilauro, Tom Gleisner and Rob Sitch. Director: Rob Sitch; Executive Producer: Michael Hirsh.

Tuesday, 15 July 8:00PM – Family Fortunes

From the Logie-award winning team that brought us Dynasties, Family Fortunes is a four-part half-hour series that explores how dramatic reversals in fortune – for better or worse – have affected Australia’s most interesting families.

The series includes the untold story of racing legend Peter Brock’s family; the extraordinary tale of pokie king Len Ainsworth and his family; the poignant story of the once-great Manifolds of Victorian squattocracy; and the fascinating behind-the-scenes family tale of Australia’s own Picasso, John Olsen.

Tuesday, 15 July 8:30PM – Miracle on Everest

Legendary Australian mountaineer Lincoln Hall remembers – in his own words – the story of his miraculous Mount Everest climb. Left for dead, he defied the odds and lived to tell the tale.

With never before seen footage, exclusive access, interviews and high quality dramatic reconstructions, Miracle on Everest is one of the great survival stories.

Thursday, 17 July 6:10PM – Buildings That Shaped Britain

History, geography and drama are all rolled into one with a fascinating eight-part series on Britain’s architecture from the dark ages to the present.

Presenter English historian Simon Thurley and a team of local specialists look at how Britain’s buildings are more than bricks and mortar, they’re also a document of the times that created them.

This first episode looks at the might and power of the Normans who destroyed all the Anglo-Saxon traces in their path when they conquered Britain in 1066.

They stamped their wealth and brutality in their buildings – soaring, stone edifices of castles, cathedrals and monasteries that spoke intimidation and terror, but also paradoxically, reverence to God.

Sunday, 20 July 5:00pm – Sunday Arts Interviews Lenny Henry

This week on Sunday Arts Virginia Trioli catches up with British funny-man; looks at The Art Life at The Biennale of Sydney; and feature What The Future Sounded Like, a documentary that colours in a lost chapter in music history.

British comedian Lenny Henry started his stand up career in 1975. Since then he has also worked as a writer and actor in film, television and documentaries including a voice acting role in Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. He has even taken a stab at singing, appearing on the Kate Bush album The Red Shoes (1993), and has worked as a radio DJ.

However Henry has always returned to stand up and this July he is coming to Australia with his new show Where You From? following a sell-out season in the UK.

Sunday, 20 July 8:35PM – Foyle’s War

Michael Kitchen is back as DCS Christopher Foyle for the final 3 televemovies of the popular BAFTA winning series Foyle’s War.

Monday, 21 July 6:30pm – Talking Heads: Sir Jack Brabham

This week on Talking Heads Peter Thompson talks to the ultimate ‘speed racer’ Sir Jack Brabham OBE.

The Brabham name is synonymous with Grand Prix motor racing and to this day, Sir Jack Brabham, the first driver in history to be knighted for his services to motorsport, remains one of racing’s most popular personalities.

A triple world champion, Brabham is the only Formula One driver to have won a world title in a car of his own construction – the BT19 – which he drove to victory in 1966.

However, as he tells Talking Heads, Brabham’s career was almost spent delivering groceries for his dad.

Tuesday, 22 July 8:30PM – Dinosaurs on Ice

Deep inside the Arctic, scientists are experimenting with extreme palaeontology methods to unlock the secrets of polar dinosaurs, and perhaps the key to our own survival on Earth.

On Alaska’s north slope there are dinosaur bones, lots of them. But they’re trapped in an icy tomb – an impenetrable wall of permafrost.

Friday, 25 July 9:50pm – We Can Be Heroes: Finding The Australian of The Year

Before Summer Heights High, there was We Can Be Heroes…

Ja’mie King, Pat Mullens, Ricky Wong, Phil Olivetti and twin brothers Daniel and Nathan Sims return to ABC TV in the repeat screening of the six-part mockumentary series We Can Be Heroes. Created by Logie award-winning comedian Chris Lilley (Summer Heights High), We Can Be Heroes initially screened on ABC TV in 2005. If you missed it then, don’t miss it now!

Saturday, 26 July 6:30pm – Gardening Australia

This episode marks an end of an era of Gardening Australia when the irrepressible Peter Cundall makes his final appearance on the perennial gardening program.

Peter has been broadcasting on ABC television and radio on a weekly basis since 1969.

For the last 18 years he has been the major presenter on ABC TV’s highly popular Gardening Australia, entertaining and informing gardeners around the country with his gardening knowledge and infectious enthusiasm. So without further ado, let’s get stuck in…

ABC2 TV Highlights

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New ABC2 Breakfast News Show Debuts September

Lateline’s Virginia Trioli and Foreign Correspondent’s Peter Lloyd will anchor the ABC’s new TV news program “Breakfast” starting on ABC2 in September.

From 6am to 10am every weekday, Breakfast will carry news from the broadcaster’s television, radio and online journalists. As previously reported it will include footage of live radio interviews with politicians and breaking international news.

It is expected to compete with morning radio, Sunrise, Today and Sky News.

ABC managing director Mark Scott has taken a personal interest in developing Breakfast overseeing the ABC’s first purpose-built, 24-hour multi-media newsroom, in Ultimo.

“If Sky News can deliver a 24-hour news service with a fraction of the number of journalists working in ABC newsrooms, then it stands to follow that the ABC is capable of producing a 24/7 news service for our audiences: we just need to work smarter to deliver it,” Mr Scott said earlier this year.

Broadcast from Melbourne, Breakfast will have a dedicated Canberra political correspondent as well as access to all the other journalists for breaking news.
– source : TV Tonight

Monday to Saturday 6:35pm – Scrapheap Challenge

Scrapheap Challenge is an Emmy-nominated hit entertainment program from UK’s Channel 4 which features two opposing teams who have just one day to build incredible machines using only the materials they find on a scrap heap.

Saturday 5th/12th/19th/26th July – Audrey Hepburn Movie Season

movie of the monthJuly 5th – ABC2 presents Roman Holiday, the first in a season of Audrey Hepburn classic films, and the film that marks her first starring role.

Released in 1953, Roman Holiday was nominated for ten Academy Awards, and Audrey Hepburn won an Oscar for her portrayal of Princess Anne, a modern-day princess, rebelling against the royal obligations, and who explores Rome on her own.

She meets Joe Bradley (Gregory Peck), an American newspaperman who, seeking an exclusive story, pretends ignorance of her true identity. But his plan falters when they fall in love. Irving Radovich (Eddie Albert) contributes to the fun as Joe’s carefree cameraman pal. Stylishly directed by William Wyler, this romantic comedy ranks as one of the most enjoyable films of all times.

July 12thSabrina
July 19thWar And Peace
July 26thFunny Face

Many of the Movies and TV series mentioned in this article can be bought from Chaos DVDs

Wednesday, 16 July 9:30pm, 8:35pm – The Real Sleeping Beauty

In 1984, 18-year-old Sarah Scantlin was run over by a drunk driver. To save her life doctors had to remove a blood clot the size of a fist from her brain. The surgery left Sarah in a deep coma and with permanent brain damage. She was to be in a coma-like state for the rest of her life, unable to communicate and seemingly unaware of the world around her. Sarah was left in a nursing home with feeding tubes to keep her alive.

Twenty years after her accident a miracle happened. In 2005, Sarah miraculously woke up and began to speak. It was a recovery her doctors said was impossible. No-one has ever been in a coma-like state for so long and regained the power of speech. The Real Sleeping Beauty films Sarah two years after she spoke her first words. Sarah’s goal is independence, to feed herself and be able to stand and walk unassisted- a goal experts believe is impossible.

Wednesday, 23 July 8:30pm – What Price Fame?: Where Egos Dare

What Price Fame? consists of three one-hour specials exploring our obsession with fame and the high costs associated with stardom.

Episode 1: Where Egos Dare
What is a celebrity? The documentary takes an inside look at the lives of the Hollywood A-list, exposing their narcissism, vanity and addictions. The program examines the pressure of coping with fame and the media frenzy that first creates and then destroys celebrities.

Wednesday, 23 July 10:10pm – The Real Rain Man

Whatever happened to the real Rain Man, the quiet genius, Kim Peek, whose extraordinary life story inspired the character played by Dustin Hoffman?

Since the Oscar-winning movie Rain Man became a worldwide hit, the ‘world’s greatest savant’ Kim Peek has wowed and thrilled over half a million people, demonstrating his phenomenal brain power in a unique roadshow that travels around the USA.

Brain-damaged at birth, everything Kim read he retained and he learnt to do calculations at breathtaking speeds. When Hollywood scriptwriter Barry Morrow met him, he knew that his story had to be told – and the rest is history.

This film is a moving account of a unique human relationship between Kim and his dedicated father; and meets four bedazzled teams of scientists who try to unravel Kim’s remarkable brain power.

Commercial TV Highlights

Key sporting events are being pressured to be staged in “twilight” time zones to maximise television viewing audiences.

F1 Grand Prix organisers are reported to have settled on a 5pm start and for the race to stay in Melbourne until 2015. There were demands for a full-scale night-time race.

Meanwhile the AFL says it expects Channels 7 and 10 to push for a twilight Grand Final before their contract to broadcast footy expires.
– source: TV Tonight