TVNZ pulls plug on television awards

New Zealand's television stars won't be getting any gongs this year.

TVNZ has pulled the plug on New Zealand Television Awards for actors, producers, directors and journalists on television.

Bosses for the free-to-air television channels met yesterday to decide the future of the awards, which had run in the same format for five years.

It is understood TV3 tried to maintain them in some form.

But TVNZ spokeswoman Georgie Hills said the state broadcaster decided against support "because the TV awards has fallen short".

"It has run its course and part of the problem was that the awards had become a two-horse race between TVNZ and TV3."

She acknowledged the turbulent history of New Zealand television struggling to maintain an awards ceremony.

TVNZ was keen to look ahead at some new way of celebrating success and would be talking to people about what could replace it.

The TVNZ spokeswoman could not rule out internal awards for its own people and projects.

"But in practical terms there will be no New Zealand Television Awards for 2013."

She said the cost for the ceremony and the work involved for TVNZ each year had been a factor in its decision to end support.

"There had also been concern about the lack of public interest and engagement last year compared to the Vodafone Music Awards."

The free-to-air television industry body Think TV said the awards had been through turbulent times in the last few years, including the loss of a key sponsor in 2011.

- John Drinnan, New Zealand Herald

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