The Project NZ proposed to be discontinued, consultation starts

  • 26/10/2023
The Project NZ is hosted by Jesse Mulligan, Kanoa Lloyd and Jeremy Corbett.
Photo credit: Warner Bros. Discovery

Warner Bros. Discovery ANZ has announced Three's news and entertainment show The Project has entered consultation over a proposal to be discontinued in December.

The show, broadcast at 7pm on weekdays, was launched in 2017 and is hosted by Jesse Mulligan, Kanoa Lloyd and Jeremy Corbett, who are usually joined by a guest fourth host.

Around 24 staff members work on the programme.

A Warner Bros. Discovery spokesperson said: "We have commenced consultation to discontinue The Project on Three from the end of the year - our primary focus is to support our people as we work through this process."

Senior Director of News Sarah Bristow announced the proposal to the Newshub team.

"If the proposed change is confirmed, we will design a redefined news show in the 7pm timeslot as part of the broader Newshub proposition," said Bristow in the email.

"I want to acknowledge the hard work of Jesse, Kanoa, Jeremy, Jon Bridges, Ali Ventura and the entire crew of The Project, who have worked tirelessly to bring this show to air for the past seven years.

"The Project has served Newshub and Three incredibly well since its commission back in 2017, however audience behaviour has changed dramatically since that time.

"This year, we have discussed at length why we are transitioning our broadcast business to a digitally-led operating model and the transformation of our newsroom is equally crucial as we move away from a model that has centred around linear broadcasting and programme deadlines to one that is more responsive to audience needs across the day.

"We have been reviewing all areas of our business to reimagine what our on-air news offering would look like, if we were to build it again from the ground up - the focus being to capture digital audiences and drive online engagement as we have successfully done with Paddy Gower Has Issues.

"There are no proposed format changes to other Newshub shows."

Warner Bros. Discovery ANZ Senior Vice President and Head of Networks Glen Kyne also emailed staff members about the proposal.

"We have not come to this proposal lightly and we have the utmost respect for all our colleagues at The Project. The work that has gone into this show and what has been achieved during its tenure is hugely appreciated," said Kyne.

"This is a strategic proposal for our business as we move to a digitally-led operating model and look to redefine our 7PM proposition in line with our commissioning strategy."