RTE to spend €1.12m on Brendan O'Connor's new weekly panel show
Published 07/01/2016 | 07:20
After losing his Saturday night chat show to Ray D'Arcy, Brendan O'Connor is set to front a new panel show on RTE1.
The national broadcaster is set to pump €1.12m into the show, which will "take a provocative and entertaining look at the week's events".
RTE have a budget of €70,000 per hour-long episode, excluding Brendan's fee, and are looking to commission a "suitably experienced" production company to make the show.
In the brief, RTE said they want to move away from the "presenter-behind-a-desk format" and suggest "using the green room and backstage areas to create a relaxed, off-the-cuff, cafe/pub vibe".
They want to create a "fun, playful space where the rules are different, surprises happen and the audience is guaranteed something different".
Brendan will be joined by two or three guests every week from a panel of eight regular contributors.
There will also be one featured studio guest each week, a competition, and a number of "studio-based items".
RTE also want to promote the show via social media and want the production company to prioritise "audience interaction through Facebook, Twitter and Periscope".
Brendan's show is set to shake up RTE's summer season, as it will run for 16 weeks from May at 9.30pm on Wednesday nights.
RTE came in for criticism last year due to the number of repeats aired across the station during the summer months.
Brendan had fronted the Saturday Night Show for five years before being replaced by 'prodigal son' D'Arcy.
The Herald recently revealed how RTE spent €136,000 on the new set for The Ray D'Arcy Show.
Since its launch the show has pulled in an average of 392,000 viewers each week.