You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Nine loses exclusive for New Year’s Eve

Judge orders court costs against web

SYDNEY — Kerry Packer’s attempt to prevent pubcaster ABC’s coverage of Sydney’s New Year’s Eve millennium fireworks fizzed Friday when Federal Court Justice Donald Hill threw out a lawsuit by Packer’s Nine Network and awarded court costs against the web.

Nine argued its sponsorship of the event gave it exclusive broadcast rights to the fireworks in Sydney (geographically, the globe’s first major capital to hail the new millennium), prompting it to seek an injunction against the ABC, which is feeding footage to Britain’s BBC and America’s ABC for a worldwide broadcast on 60 webs.

Public purview

Refusing to issue an injunction, Hill said the event and landmarks such as the Sydney Harbor Bridge and Opera House were in the public domain and it was in the public interest to allow Oz’s ABC to air its traditional coverage of the event.

Hill also criticized the lateness of the filing, saying Nine had been aware of ABC’s plans for months.

While the pubcaster got itself into the millennial party, Nine is not giving up on booting it out for future years, taking the matter back to court March 6.

A fuming Nine darkly warned of ramifications for events like the forthcoming Sydney 2000 Olympics, to which Kerry Stokes’ Seven Network has exclusive rights.

‘Fair game’

“Anything outside now is fair game to any network,” Nine exec producer Steve Wood told reporters.

In a related manner, Packer filed suit against newspaper giant Fairfax on Friday, claiming the Sydney Morning Herald’s coverage of the fireworks lawsuit intended to “hurt and damage” Packer’s reputation and bring him into “public scandal, odium and contempt.”

A Fairfax spokesman said the suit is “ridiculous.”

More TV

  • Jay Sures

    UTA Co-President Jay Sures Reappointed to University of California Board of Regents

    UTA co-president Jay Sures has been reappointed to the University of California Board of Regents for a 12-year term. The term, which is still pending Senate confirmation, will be effective from March 2 and was announced among a larger batch of appointments by Governor Gavin Newsom. Sures was first appointed to the position in Jan. [...]

  • Netflix - The Witcher

    'The Witcher' on Track to Be Netflix's Biggest TV Show Premiere Ever, Company Claims

    Netflix said “The Witcher,” the fantasy series starring Henry Cavill, is pacing to be its biggest first-season original TV series ever. “The Witcher,” which debuted Dec. 20 on Netflix, was chosen to be watched by 76 million customer households in the first four weeks of release, according to the company. That would appear to mean [...]

  • RuPaul

    RuPaul, JJ Watt to Host 'Saturday Night Live' in February

    RuPaul and JJ Watt will both make their “Saturday Night Live” hosting debuts in February. NBC announced Tuesday that Watt will host the Feb. 1 installment of the long-running sketch series with musical guest Luke Combs. Watt is currently a defensive end for the Houston Texans and three-time AP Defensive Player of the Year. Combs’ [...]

  • Gary Dauberman

    'Annabelle,' 'IT' Screenwriter Gary Dauberman Inks First-Look Deal at UCP

    Gary Dauberman has signed a first-look television deal with Universal Content Productions (UCP), the studio announced Tuesday. Under the deal, Dauberman will write and produce scripted projects across all platforms. He will also launch his own production company, Coin Operated. Dauberman is known for his work on the screenplay for the new film version of [...]

  • Chris McCarthy Sets ViacomCBS Team for

    Chris McCarthy Sets ViacomCBS Leadership Team for Entertainment & Youth Division

    ViacomCBS’ senior leadership ranks are coming into sharper focus as Chris McCarthy, head of the sprawling Entertainment and Youth wing has solidified his senior leadership team. A number of executives closely associated with McCarthy are gaining additional responsibilities, including programming maven Nina Diaz, MTV chief marketing officer Jacqueline Parkes and PR chief Liza Burnett Fefferman. [...]

  • Jonathan Del Arco

    'Star Trek: Picard' Actor Jonathan Del Arco Launches 'Hollywood Caucus' Podcast With First Guest Jeri Ryan

    Jonathan Del Arco is boldly going into the intersection of entertainment and politics. On Tuesday, the “Star Trek: Picard” actor debuted his new podcast “Hollywood Caucus,” with co-host Tara Karsian. Hailing from Dan Harmon’s Starburns Audio, the podcast will feature interviews with figures from both the entertainment industry and the political sphere. For the premiere [...]

  • The Prince HBO Max

    HBO Max Orders Animated British Royal Family Satire Series 'The Prince'

    HBO Max has ordered an animated comedy series centered on the British royal family. “The Prince” hails from writer and executive producer Gary Janetti. Based on Janetti’s Instagram account, the series takes a look at the royals through the eyes of Prince George, the eldest child of Prince William and Princess Kate. Janetti will voice [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content