While we won’t be seeing A Country Practice back on air tomorrow, we can now raise our hopes of seeing reruns of our favourite Aussie shows.
Earlier this week, the powers that be - Screen Producers Australia and the Media Entertainment and Arts Alliance - came to an agreement that will make replaying Australian programs a whole lot easier.
“This is a ground-breaking agreement,” Screen Producers Australia CEO Matthew Deaner says.
“[It] will unlock the potential that digital technology offers for the benefit of the Australian production industry, Australian broadcasters, and to the Australian viewer.”
Previous agreements saw restrictions placed on the number of time television shows could be aired or streamed. In accordance with the Actors Television Repeats and Residuals Agreement, almost no Australian TV dramas were re-licensed. The market just could not afford to pay performers to air their work multiple times.
However, the new agreement sees all this change. It takes our TV industry into the 21st Century.
With actors’ rights now including payment for catch-up TV and views on streaming services, upcoming Aussie shows will have the flexibility to be replayed in line with viewer demands.
But, in terms of shows such as The Flying Doctors returning to TV, it will be up to the performers to decide if it can be replayed.
Matthew Deaner explains that these shows still operate under their old contracts but the agreement allows for renegotiation.
“The new framework that we have announced provides for an agreed framework by which performers may agree to a variation in their original contracts to better allow for re-use,” he told TV Tonight.
“The key is that all performers on a particular show will need to do this in order to receive the benefit.”
What this means is that a path has been opened up for classic Aussie shows to return. It won’t happen overnight and all the parties involved – actors, networks and producers – will have to agree to reruns. But now, the process will happen a lot faster.
Our bet is that once one brave cast and producers gets the ball rolling, we will see a lot more soaps and dramas get on board. And we can’t wait to have our favourite shows at our fingertips!
This story originally appeared on TV WEEK.