31 Aug 2004, 12:39:21 PM

Channel Seven commissions two drama series destined
to define the future face of Australian drama.

Director of Programming and Production, Tim Worner today confirmed that Channel Seven has commissioned Campus and Last Man Standing, both long form drama series. Pre-production will commence immediately with principal photography scheduled for early 2005.

Mr. Worner said: “Since television first arrived in Australia, the production of successful local drama and Channel Seven have gone hand in hand. Our commitment to this genre and its continued development is of great importance to us – it's a tradition here at Seven and it's also a major part of our future."

“During 2004 we have been able to bolster the creative direction of our landmark drama series' Blue Heelers and Home and Away. Audiences have embraced this effort with their loyalty and support as each programme built ratings growth during the season. All Saints has delivered a strong performance in a fiercely competitive time slot and its audience has strengthened in the critical Sydney market. Campus and Last Man Standing will join Channel Seven's stable of dramas at a time when Australians are showing they want more”.

Campus, which will begin shooting in 2005, is a co-production with the UK's Channel 4. The creator is Seven's Head of Creative Development (Drama) Bevan Lee. Executive Producer is Seven's Head of Drama, John Holmes. Together, Lee and Holmes are a formidable team, having brought to our screens the iconic Home & Away currently in its 17th season and All Saints in its 7th season.

Campus tells the stories of a group of students from varying backgrounds as they go about their lives at South Coast University. The drama incorporates their dealings with teachers, counsellors, families, friends and enemies.

“The series is set in a magnificent coastal location and by the time we get into the first few episodes, everyone will want to up stumps and move there”, said Mr Worner.

Last Man Standing will be produced by Burberry Productions. The series will explore the sexual and emotional terrain of three 20-something males as they grapple with the confusion, energy and joy of the female species. Shooting will begin in October 2004. Rodger Corser, Matt Passmore and Travis McMahon will play the lead roles.

Burberry principal Ewan Burnett is the Executive Producer. Series writer, Marieke Hardy and Sue Edwards are co-producers. Burberry Productions is aligned with TVNZ as production and broadcast partner and Channel 4 International is the distribution partner. Film Victoria is investing in the production.

“We are very much looking forward to bringing the spontaneous humour of Last Man Standing to Channel Seven audiences next year”, said Tim Worner, “Ewan Burnett has assembled a team that has created something very special. In particular Marieke Hardy has managed to identify and exploit a part of our lives we find irresistible. Last Man Standing will become appointment television.”