WannaBen’s Ben Boyce has appeared in the Manukau District Court this afternoon with his fellow accused over the stunt they tried to pull at Auckland Airport last September.

Boyce, The Rock host Bryce Casey, TV producer Andrew Robinson, Daniel Watkins, Craig O’Reilly and Gregory Clarke appeared at Manukau District Court today charged with providing false information in an attempt to gain access to a secure area.

At the sentence indication hearing all the accused changed their plea to guilty.

The charge carries a maximum penalty of 12 months imprisonment and a $10,000 fine.

The case had originally been set down for a defended hearing but last week a decision was made to hold a sentence indication hearing. Continue reading »

Ben Boyce has said in hindsight that he regrets taking part in the airport stunt that led to his arrest.

Boyce was among a group of six who were involved in the WannaBen skit that saw him attempt to gain access to a secure area at Auckland International Airport. While dressed as a pilot.

He was charged along with Bryce Casey, Andrew Robinson, Daniel Watkins, Craig O’Reilly and Gregory Clarke under the Civil Aviation Act for providing false information in an attempt to gain access to a secure area.

Boyce told Woman’s Weekly that he regrets the choice of stunt.

“In hindsight, it was a foolish decision to go to the airport. If only we had thought it through a bit more,” Boyce said.

“I was making a comedy show but suddenly nothing was funny anymore.”

“You know, going into it, intending it to be a harmless skit, not thinking it through fully and to go to the place it’s gone has just been pretty hard.

“It’s been a big learning curve.”

Top-rating local comedy 7 Days and 3 News’ election coverage are two highlights of a strong month of growth for TV3, which saw significant gains in the key 25-54 demographic, while TV One continued to lose ground.

In November, TV3 grew it’s primetime share of the 25-54 audience by 15.8%, compared with the previous month, moving ahead of TV One, which dropped by 8.6%.

Top-performing programmes included 7 Days, The Graham Norton Show, NCIS, Inside Child Poverty – A Special Report, WannaBen, The X-Factor USA, Missing Pieces, as well as movies I Robot and It’s Complicated. 

MediaWorks’ Group Managing Director, Sussan Turner, says the 25-54 growth sets TV3 up for a strong finish to 2011, and bodes well for the New Year.

“It’s very pleasing to have success like this right across the primetime schedule from comedy and drama to entertainment and documentary.  These results are a testament to Director of Programming, Kelly Martin, News and Current Affairs Director, Mark Jennings, and their teams, and demonstrate our two-channel strategy is paying off.

“I’d also like to congratulate everyone involved with 7 Days, which was November’s No. 1 show, and pay tribute to the entire 3 News team for the quality of our top-rating Decision ’11 coverage.”

7 Days was the No. 1 programme in November for the 25-54 audience, across all networks.

TV3 reached another 25-54 milestone when 3 News’ Decision ’11 election special won the 25-54 demographic from TV One for the first time in the network’s history.  Presented by John Campbell and Duncan Garner, the election special was watched by 23% more 25-54 year-olds than TV One.**

10:00pm – Friday, November 25 on TV 3

WANNA-BEn… Boyce is back for his second one-off special of the year and this time he’s set his sights on becoming a politician and running the country in WANNA-BEn: Politician, screening on Friday, November 25 th at 10pm on 3. After failing the make Graham Henry’s All Black squad, Ben returns to TV, only to be bullied by his boss into making an Election Special.

Ben’s only logical solution – is to become Prime Minister so he’ll never get told what to do again!

Armed with the sage words of his political mentors; Phil Goff, Winston Peters and Hone Harawira, Ben attempts to fast track the road to political success in his own misguided fashion; enlisting the help of as many famous New Zealand faces as he can con into appearing on the show.

While Boyce actually ran in the last election, receiving 13,016 votes, with his “Bill & Ben Party”, this counts for nothing, with Ben’s 2011 political portfolio made up of silly political skits, sketches and parodies.

So why does Ben now wannabe a politician? “It looks like a pretty sweet gig – you get a free BMW and a Radio LIVE slot, to talk about cats,” says Ben. “Not only do they get to run the country but they also seem to act like children and some even take naps at work! Why wouldn’t I want to be a politician?!”

WANNA-BEn: Politician screens the night before the election, Friday, November 25 th at 10pm on 3.

The six men involved in the fake pilot stunt for TV3’s WannaBen show will reappear in court today.

Ben Boyce, Bryce Casey, Andrew Robinson and three other men with interim name suppression are facing one charge under the Civil Aviation Act of providing false information in an attempt to gain access to a secure area.

The group’s lawyer Rosemary Thompson indicated that they will be making a not guilty plea.

For the stunt, which was filmed for the WannaBen series, Boyce attempted to board an Air New Zealand plane dressed as a pilot but was stopped by security before he was able to gain access to any restricted areas.

If convicted, the men could face a maximum of 12 months in jail or a fine of up to $10,000.

UPDATE: The case has been delayed for a month while police consider whether granting diversion for the men would be appropriate.

Source: Stuff

7:30pm – Saturday, September 24 on TV 3

WANNA-BEn… Boyce is back, and making a comedically feeble attempt to be an All Black like Richie McCaw. But has he left his run for World Cup glory too late? Find out in WANNA-BEn: Rugby Special, screening on Saturday, September 24th at 7:30pm on 3.

After the hugely successful first series, WANNA-BEn returns for a special one-off Rugby special featuring All Blacks skipper, Richie McCaw and a squad of skits, sketches, parodies and more rugby related puns than you could pack on a team bus.

WANNA-BEn: Rugby Special stars former Pulp Sport host, Ben Boyce – features an ‘in depth’ interview with All Blacks captain Richie McCaw and ropes in cameos from past and present AB’s greats like Frank Bunce, Josh Kronfeld, Ali Williams, Andrew Mehrtens and even has a surprise appearance from the coach, Graham Henry.

When Ben becomes jealous of his flatmate, ex-All Black Frank Bunce, receiving free World Cup tickets just for having been an All Black, the only logical solution is for Ben to become an All Black, so he too can go to the All Blacks test for free.

Ben then talks to All Black captain Richie McCaw, in an effort to discern exactly what it takes to wear the black jersey. Armed with the sage words of his rugby mentor, Ben then attempts to emulate Richie’s road to success in his own misguided fashion; enlisting the help of as many past and present All Blacks as he can con into appearing on the show.

So why does Ben now wannabe an All Black? “Because not only do they get free tickets but also free clothes and lots of money so I can finally buy that hovercraft,” Ben says.

“Although I’m not that keen on training in the rain or communal showers, so I hope they’re not deal breakers.”

WANNA-BEn: Rugby Special kicks off at 7.30pm on Saturday, September 24th as part of TV3’s Rugby World Cup coverage building up to the All Blacks v France test.

The fake pilot incident that has been widely reported on today was part of a sketch filmed for Wanna-Ben, a comedy series produced by Yoink Productions for TV3.

MediaWorks was not privy to details of the shoot before it took place on Saturday.

We have subsequently spoken to the production company about the incident, and are satisfied that the company did not intend to breach airport security, nor create a major security alert.  

The three Yoink Productions staff involved, Ben Boyce, Bryce Casey and Andrew Robinson, alerted police as soon as they realised there was concern and are being fully cooperative.

The matter is now before the courts and does not affect the show as scheduled for this week, which is a rugby-themed one-off Wanna-Ben special.

Obviously we would never encourage or condone any illegal activity.  We will be monitoring the progress of this matter through the courts and making decisions accordingly. 

Ben Boyce has asked that the following statement be included on behalf of himself and Yoink Productions.

“I am so sorry for all the trouble this has caused.  We did not intend to breach security or cause any worry or concern.   This was an attempt at humour which we fully accept was misplaced.  We did try to contact the police as soon as we could to tell them there was no threat.

“I cannot say how sorry we all are.”


The “pilot” who attempted to access restricted areas of Auckland International Airport is associated with the WannaBen series for TV3.

The fake pilot tried to gain entry onto a domestic flight on Saturday afternoon but was refused by gate staff who asked to see photo ID.

UPDATE: There have been three arrests regarding the incident. Those charged are a 33-year-old Ben Boyce, 26-year-old Andrew Logan Robinson and 32-year-old Bryce Casey.

The trio could face hefty fines should they be convicted.

Source: Stuff

10:00pm – Friday, December 17 on TV 3

He’s tried everything from a sports star to a business man, but could Ben Boyce’s true calling really be to be a TV star? And if so, isn’t he already there? Find out the answer to these and other questions in the WANNA-BEn season finale, screening on Friday, December 17th at 10pm on 3.

“Unlike my attempts at finding a dream job, the actual television series has gone great,” explains Ben about what it’s been like being a TV star with his own series.

“Sure some of the viewers may have complained about some of the skits, but I couldn’t really complain about interviewing the likes of Alice Cooper, Ke$ha, Vanilla Ice and Steven Seagal.”

Now Ben is trying his hand at being a TV star by employing the assistance of The Nanny’s Fran Drescher!

But with the first season of his own series coming to an end, isn’t becoming a TV star kind of redundant?

Ben cleverly avoids this question, simply by explaining what audiences can expect from the season finale.

“I interviewed Fran at her house in Malibu, and yes that is her real voice!” he says. “That was the first question I asked.”

“I also enjoyed the fact that I had to get a machine gun laugh to be like her, so that meant firing machine guns in Las Vegas!”

But what about already being a TV star, how does all this fit into the series? Only one way to find out – by tuning into the WANNA-BEn season finale, screening on Friday, December 17th at 10pm on 3.

10:00pm – Friday, November 19 on TV 3

Having always wished that he was funny, Ben is easily convinced when his mother interrupts his time on the couch to inform him she has found him a job as a comedian in this week’s WANNA-BEn, screening on Friday, November 19th at 10pm on 3.

After attempting to be a comedic actor like Jim Carey, Will Ferrell or Ben Stiller, Ben decides he’d much rather be a ‘stand-up comedian’. After getting directions from Kiwi comic Steve Wrigley (7 Days), he flies to Las Vegas – a place where all the best comedians perform.

In Vegas, Ben interviews Penn from the magical comedian duo Penn & Teller, Wayne Brady of Whose Line is it Anyway fame and the odd-ball props comedian Carrot Top.

In Ben’s quest to be just like them he tries to do prop comedy with an All Black rugby prop, gets really good at lying, learns how to freestyle rap, gets bossed around by a big comedian and even performs a cool magic trick.

After all his adventures Ben finally takes the comedian job but is it what he dreamed it would be? Find out when WANNA-BEn continues its hilarious season on Friday, November 19th at 10pm on 3.