Entertainment industry stalwarts Paul Ellis and Richard Driver will join actress Mirama Smith as judges on Prime’s upcoming variety series New Zealand’s Got Talent.
Executive Producer of New Zealand’s Got Talent Nicola van der Meijden is delighted with the new additions to the show’s judging panel: “Richard and Paul each bring a wealth of industry experience and credibility which is hugely important in a series that showcases such a wide variety of talent.”
An influential figure in local and international industries, with a music career spanning 17 years, Ellis has recently returned to New Zealand after working at Channel Nine in Australia.
Ellis was a judge on the hugely popular NZ Idol and is looking forward to returning to our screens to find New Zealand’s next great talent.
“This is the only show that I would ever consider coming back to television for,” says Ellis. “I had a wonderful time on the first two seasons of NZ Idol but out of all the big entertainment shows, this one has to tick all the boxes.”
Formerly a host of Radio with Pictures, Richard Driver has worked as managing director, producer, director and performer across all entertainment genres. He has created and produced international award-winning documentaries and launched SKY Television’s Documentary Channel in November 2006.
Driver’s diverse experience makes him an ideal choice for New Zealand’s Got Talent.
“This show is an absolutely fantastic format that will give so many talented New Zealanders of all ages a real go at being seen and heard by the rest of the nation.
“I am very excited about being a judge on a show where raw and unknown talent has the opportunity to perform publicly,” he says.
Ellis and Driver will join popular actress Miriama Smith on the judging panel to decide, with the help of the New Zealand public, who will walk away with the $100,000 grand prize.
“The thing I want to see on that stage is acts that are engaging and entertaining for the whole country,” hints Ellis.
“I have the utmost respect for what Miriama and Richard have achieved in their individual careers and because we come from such different backgrounds, I’m looking for some healthy debate about the different acts that are going to be performing for us!”
Driver agrees. “I hope to see genuine, original and honest performances. My approach towards each act will be mostly supportive and constructive, although I won’t hesitate to dress down and reprimand anyone who I believe has not prepared adequately.
Most of all, I am looking forward to some exceptional talent being discovered, the weird, the wonderful and the naturally gifted – I’m sure that we will get them all.”
New Zealand’s Got Talent will be hosted by Jason Reeves and Andrew Mulligan and will air on Prime later this year.