The show will return to Channel 10 early next year and could “absolutely” be filmed in Australia instead of South Africa due to travel restrictions, the ViacomCBS Australia & New Zealand Chief Content Officer and EVP told news.com.au.
“All those things are on the table,” Beverly McGarvey said.
“We love our South African site, the jungle is kind of a character in the show, but we just don’t know if that’s possible or realistic, so we’re just looking at a range of options.
“The show will definitely be back next year … but because of the complexity of the travel, we are having to think about how we do that show, maybe in a slightly different way.”
Producers of the British version of I’m a Celeb are facing similar issues.
According to Variety, the next season of the British version, which is due later this year, might be shot in the UK instead of the Gold Coast where it’s usually filmed.
Ms McGarvey spoke to news.com.au about some of the other shows set to air on Channel 10 later this year.
Here are the highlights.
THE MASKED SINGER WILL BE VERY DIFFERENT
One of the breakout hits of 2019, The Masked Singer, will start filming “in a couple of months,” Ms McGarvey told news.com.au.
“If there was ever a show made for lockdown, it was this. People are in masks anyway,” she joked.
It’s likely there won’t be a studio audience at all due to social distancing requirements, and it’s unknown if Lindsay Lohan will be able to get back into Australia.
“I don’t think it’s realistic for the international borders to be open but there are other ways to do things so we’re just looking at all of our options at the moment,” Ms McGarvey told news.com.au.
“We don’t even know if the domestic borders will be open by then.
“The main thing is, we’re committed to making the show and we will definitely have to do things differently. The Masked Singer won’t look like it did last year, it couldn’t possibly, but we might find some ways to do things a bit better than we did last year.”
Ms McGarvey did confirm that they’ve locked in “some very exciting celebrities” to be he Masked Singers and teased: “The other really interesting thing is there’s a lot of (high-profile) people in Australia at the minute who normally wouldn’t because everyone’s come home to hunker down.”
JUNIOR MASTERCHEF IS COMING BACK
The last season of Junior MasterChef aired in 2011 but it’s set to make a comeback later this year.
“We’ve been talking about it for about a year,” Ms McGarvey told news.com.au.
“We just think, tonally, there’s a massive appetite for shows that families can sit down and watch together.”
It’s likely the new MasterChef judges, Jock Zonfrillo, Andy Allen and Melissa Leong will be involved in the show in some way.
“In the past when we’ve done Junior, we’ve used a mixture of the original MasterChef judges and some other people, and we’re just working through that now at the minute,” Ms McGarvey told news.com.au.
“We’ll have formal judges announcements to make in the next month or so.”
THE LIVING ROOM WILL RETURN
There was confusion last year when Channel 10 announced that it had axed The Living Room with a spokesman saying in December: “The Living Room will not return in 2020. We are thrilled that the brilliant team of Amanda (Keller), Barry (Du Bois), Miguel (Maestre) and Chris (Brown) will be back at 7.30 on Friday nights next year, watch this space for more information.”
But now it appears The Living Room is set to return next month.
“I think our feeling was, we’ve been on air for six or seven years, it’s time to give the show a bit of a refresh and make sure it can keep going for the next six or seven years,” Ms McGarvey told news.com.au.
“We really wanted to inject more energy and brightness in the show to reflect the talent so we really just wanted to revamp it, restyle it. That’s what happened.
“It’ll be back on air next month and it’ll be The Living Room with the (same) talent but a more energised and more contemporary version.”
THE NEXT BACHELORETTE
We know that Survivor star Locky Gilbert is the next Bachelor, but the next Bachelorette hasn’t yet been decided, Ms McGarvey told news.com.au.
“We are still just making some final decisions,” she said.
“We’re fairly close.”
But Ms McGarvey warned not to expect an official announcement about the Bachelorette’s identity anytime soon.
“We tend to not announce until our main series of Bachelor has launched because you don’t want to take the oxygen out of one series when it’s on air,” she said.
THERE’S A NEW CHANNEL COMING
Network 10 is going to introduce a fourth channel later in the year, but Ms McGarvey is remaining tight-lipped about what viewers can expect to see on it.
“Our strategy is to serve under 50s audiences and that will be the strategy on this channel,” she said.