Ray Hadley has quit SKY News to join the Nine Network's news, current affairs and sports lineup.

2GB Morning host Ray Hadley has quit his subscription television programme Hadley! after only four episodes to join the Nine Network as a news, sports and current affairs contributor.

It’s believed the 2012 London Olympics, of which Nine has the rights, was a big factor in Hadley’s decision, as was SKY News’ operations, which are best described as “shoe-string.”

The Australian’s media blog Diary today claims that plenty of SKY News staff did not want to work with Hadley, because they don’t like him or his opinions, and because they don’t rate him as a TV talent.

The first episode of the show featured a girl in a bikini in boxing gloves. Serious staff at Sky thought it was tacky, and would hurt their brand.

Canberra bureau reporter Ashleigh Gillon point-blank refused to play the role of the “glamorous blonde” from Canberra who popped up on Hadley! with political gossip and, because she’s a serious reporter, was offended to be asked, Caroline Overington claims.

 

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ABC Family has taken three pilots to series pickups today.

The wonderful ABC Family has picked up three series today. Can someone explain why we can’t get this station for our teen girls in Australia?

Here are the summaries from Deadline:

The Great State of Georgia centres on Georgia (Raven Symone), an exuberant curvy performer from the south, and her science geek best friend Jo (Majandra Delfino) who try to make headway in New York City. The pilot was written by author Jennifer Weiner (In Her Shoes) and Jeff Greenstein (Desperate Housewives). This marks the return to sitcoms for Symone, who made her debut in the genre at age 2 on The Cosby Show. It also brings a companion piece to ABC Family’s hot original sitcom Melissa & Joey.

Nine Lives is based on Alloy’s Nine Lives of Chloe King series of 3 young-adult novels by Celia Thomson. Alloy Entertainment is producing the pilot, about Chloe King (Skyler Samuels), a teenager  with heightened abilities (super speed, agility, hearing…claws) who discovers she’s being pursued by a mysterious figure. Dan Berendsen (Hannah Montana: The Movie) penned the script and is executive producing with Alloy’s Leslie Morgenstein and Gina Girolamo. This marks the second Alloy series on ABC Family along with hit Pretty Little Liars, which was recently renewed for s second season. Alloy had two hourlong pilots in the running, Nine Lives and The Lying Game. I hear that, while not picked up at this time, The Lying Game remains in contention, with ABC Family and Alloy looking at budget and other issues to make a series order possible.

Switched at Birth, written and executive produced by Lizzy Weiss (Blue Crush), is  a one-hour drama about two teen girls who discover that they were accidentally switched at birth. Bay Kennish grew up in a wealthy family with two parents and two brothers, while Daphne Vasquez, who lost her hearing as a child due to a case of meningitis, grew up with a single mother in a poor neighborhood. Things come to a dramatic head when both families meet and struggle to learn how to live together for the sake of the girls.

The Seven Network was the winner in the overnight OzTam ratings.

Networks

ABC – 12.9% (%)
Seven – 34.3% (%)
Nine – 27.5% (%)
Ten – 19.8% (%)
SBS – 5.5% (%)

Channels

ABC1 – 10.1% (%)
ABC2 – 1.5% (%)
ABC3 – 0.6% (%)
ABC News 24 – 0.7% (%)
Seven – 26.2% (%)
7TWO – 5% (%)
7mate – 3.1% (%)
Nine – 21.9% (%)
GO! – 3.1% (%)
GEM – 2.5% (%)
Ten – 15.2% (%)
One – 0.6% (%)
Eleven – 4% (%)
SBS One – 4.7% (%)
SBS Two – 0.8% (%)

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FOX FM breakfast star Matt Tilley has broken his back in a cycling accident.

FOX FM 101.9 breakfast personality Matt Tilley has a broken back after being knocked off his bike in St Kilda on Saturday.

The keen cyclist was hit by a car, fracturing two vertebrae and a rib and bruising his kidney.

“I was riding along past the St Kilda Sea Baths, obviously training for London 2012, and got knocked off my bike by a guy who swung across the bike lane… and just smash,” he told his Fox FM breakfast colleagues.

“And I sort of did the human tumbleweed along the road for a while. Eventually I came to a stop and an ambulance came and I got the green whistle,” he told the Herald Sun.

Tilley said the motorist was “very apologetic” and shocked when the top rated breakfast host gave him his name.

He spent the night at The Alfred Hospital and is now recovering at home.

Mike & Molly is one of two shows expected to replace Two & A Half Men which has gone on production hiatus.

CBS has revealed that it is ordering more episodes of Rules of Engagement, and considering ordering more of 2010’s newest comedy smash hit Mike & Molly, to fill the void left by the suspension of production on Two & A Half Men whilst star Charlie Sheen undergoes rehab for drug and alcohol addiction.

While there has been no official statement from CBS or the series’ respective studios, sources close to the situation confirm to TVLine that two additional episodes of Rules have been ordered, changing the series’ episodic order from 24 to 26.

The same can be said for CBS’ hit freshman series Mike & Molly, The Hollywood Reporter says.

Jim Ball has resigned from 2GB after being overlooked for the plum Drive gig. (Picture: Daily Telegraph)

Popular and under-utilised talkback host Jim Ball has quit his overnight programme on Sydney’s highest-rating station 2GB after management gave the plum Drive gig to little-known television host Ben Fordham.

Fordham has little radio broadcasting experience, and Ball was believed to be aggreived with management of the station that he was not asked to take on the shift.

“Appointing someone to a prime shift with little or next to no experience in talk radio, except on a fill-in basis, or someone without any demonstrated or proven ability, or ratings success in talk radio does seem rather odd to say the least,” Ball said yesterday.

“It’s not about Fordham as a person but myself and others have been overlooked by management for someone whose experience is limited,” Ball told The Daily Telegraph.

Fordham last night told Confidential he had never met Ball, but believed his gripe was with management and not a personal issue.

Popular MasterChef Justine Schofield will host a new programme for home cooks on the Ten Network and LifeStyle Channel.

Too many cooks might spoil the broth but it’s never enough for television land it appears.

Arguably the most popular contestant on the Ten Network’s juggernaut MasterChef Australia, Justine Schofield, is to host her own programme.

The Sydney Morning Herald reports that both Ten and LifeStyle Channel will screen the as-yet-unnamed programme.

Poh Ling Yeow’s Poh’s Kitchen on ABC1 and Julie Goodwin’s Home Cooked! on Nine continue the MasterChef brand across screens in Australia, with series three due to commence in April.

Schofield will attempt to convert couch potatoes into cooks with confidence.