Natasha Exelby, victim of Wake Up chemistry

Natasha Exelby, victim of Wake Up chemistry

Ten has made changes to the line-up of its new breakfast television show Wake Up with host Natasha Exelby exiting after just over two weeks on air.

B&T Magazine
Posted by B&T Magazine

A lack of chemistry or on-air “spark” forced the exit, said Ten’s director of morning television Adam Boland, who added that no changes will be made to Studio 10. 

"I rate Natasha, Natarsha and James extremely highly individually, otherwise they wouldn't have been there in the first place,” Boland said.

“I also saw genuine spark during show rehearsals, but sometimes, that doesn't translate on air. That is nobody's fault, except mine.”

Exelby will remain within Network Ten’s news division. The quick exit leaves the Wake Up desk to co-hosts Natarsha Belling and James Mathison with Nuala Hafner to continue presenting news.

Wake Up debuted on November 4 to an audience of 52,000 metro viewers. Media analyst Steve Allen described the show as ‘clunky’ but was confident it would gain traction. Click here for more.

Boland added: "I have said repeatedly that chemistry is everything at breakfast and, right now, I don't think the balance is correct. It's up to producers to fix those things.”

Meanwhile, Ten will have what it has described as its “strongest start for many years” in 2014 as it announces next year’s line-up and a focus on 25-54 year olds.

The network has announced 10 new series – five local and five international – family entertainment program at 6pm, details yet to be announced, and a revitalised line-up of sport.

On the yet to be announced family program Beverly McGarvey, Ten’s chief programming officer, said: “We will build our audience show by show, timeslot by timeslot. Our new family entertainment show for the 6pm weekdays timeslot is a key part of that plan and we are looking forward to releasing details of that show very soon.”

In addition to the undisclosed family property, other local shows for next year include So You Think You Can Dance Australia, Secrets & Lies, Party Tricks starring Offspring’s Asher Keddie and online only show Lost with the Boys.

Lost with the Boys, an online collection of short stories, will be broadcast online on tenplay.

New international programs are 24 Live Another Day, The Millers, Crisis, Extant and Tyrant.

New in sport is the KFC T20 Big Bash League, the Olympic Winter Games and the Glasgow Commonwealth Games in July and August. The MotoGP, Formula One, The Castrol Edge Rugby Championship will also be found on Ten.

Returning local programs include The Bachelor Australia, with the first series winding up tonight, MasterChef Australia and The Biggest Loser: Challenge Australia.

In drama, Offspring will return along with Puberty Blues and new Wonderland.

Overseas programs continuing to run on Ten include NCIS and spin-off NCIS: Los Angeles, Homeland, Under the Dome, Elementary, Ripper Street, The Good Wife and more.

Ten CEO, Hamish McLennan, said: “TEN has seen growth in its 25 to 54 audience in recent months. We are already delivering big 25 to 54 audiences in many programs and we are determined to build on that in 2014.”

“At the same time, ELEVEN will continue to offer compelling content for the 13 to 29 age group and ONE will sharpen its focus on men aged over 25 and sports fans.

“Our new industry-leading digital platform, tenplay, has posted strong growth since it launched on September 30. In 2014, we will be adding new distribution channels, new partners and new content, including Australian content that will be exclusive to tenplay.”