It seems Charlie Pickering has wrapped up his five years on The Project:
“My biggest thanks of all goes to you for watching. I consider it an absolute privilege to be on air. That you would invite me into your home night after night means the world to me. It’s been an honour being in your television and I look forward to doing it again, before too long.”
That makes one of us*.
*ok, that’s a bit harsh. It seems clear he clearly wants to do higher-brow, edgier, political stuff in the future, and we’re certainly interested in seeing him tackle that. But after five years of slightly smug televised drive-radio banter, we’re not sorry to see him leave The Project. And with Hughsie out the door and Ten going down the crapper ratings-wise, he may have bailed just in time…
**Edit: someone just pointed out this story:
On-set blow-ups are a part of life when it comes to putting a live news and entertainment show to air five nights a week, according to The Project’s executive producer Craig Campbell.
But he denies that one such blow up was the catalyst for one of the Channel Ten show’s stars, Charlie Pickering, to quit.
”We have blow-ups all the time. I have them with everyone,” Campbell told PS this week, hosing down rumours of a showdown he and Pickering had last month while the show was being shot in Sydney.
”It’s part of being a member of a creative team that produces live television five nights of the week … We are under immense pressure. It comes with the territory. We are all very passionate people.”
Rumours have circulated throughout Channel Ten that Pickering himself had a rather ”combative” approach to dealing with the producers and staff on The Project.
We can confirm at least one aspect of this story: those rumours have circulated beyond the walls of Channel Ten. And if you’re going to counter a rumour, you really need to try harder than Campbell is, because this…
”There are always creative differences. It’s just a part of this business. I’m sure there will be plenty more creative differences in the future.
”But there was absolutely no problem with Charlie. He has done an amazing job over the past five years … He graciously agreed to stick around a bit longer than he had originally planned.”
… is basically confirming that the blow-up (which may or may not have led to Pickering’s departure) did happen. Though our best guess is that Campbell is right: these “blow-ups” happened all the time between Pickering and… whoever… and this one was only noted because it happened outside of the confines of Ten’s studios at The Como Centre. Where presumably these “blow-ups” were just part of the job.
I think he said he’s going to write a book while on holiday so that’s his next project.
The problem is to do what he want the only real place to do that is the ABC. But they’ve got Micallef & Co, The Chaser and Gruen Whatever already doing that.