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Radio New Zealand plans TV service

Friday 05 Aug 2011
The Radio New Zealand board of governors has given the thumbs up to plans for televised versions of its content as the foundation for a new public service television channel, The New Zealand Herald reports.

The proposed new channel would replace TVNZ7 when government funding runs out next July.

RNZ staff such as Geoff Robinson and Mary Wilson would have to learn how to talk to cameras and which makeup works best on screen.

John Barnett, chief executive of South Pacific Pictures – which is working with RNZ on the plan – said behind-the-scenes proposals had already received positive reception from RNZ’s board.

Radio New Zealand chairman Richard Griffin said he was optimistic that with Mr Barnett’s involvement Radio New Zealand TV could take off.

Details such as financing have not yet been spelt out.

Mr Barnett said that South Pacific Pictures would provide a facilitating and contracting role beyond RNZ content, with independent programme makers supplying content the same way they do for TVNZ7.

Mr Barnett said RNZ TV could be produced for significantly less than the over NZ$15 million (US$12.5 million) a year spent on TVNZ digital channels in the past four years.