This week on TV2
What Now says goodbye to Tamati and hello to a new star.
After four years of appearing on the long-running TV2 children’s favourite show, What Now, Tamati Coffey will leave the show at the beginning of September. Tamati says: “I’ve had an awesome time on What Now, travelling all over Aotearoa and meeting some really cool kids, spreading mess and fun along the way! It’s been my dream come true to work on What Now, making so many people laugh… but despite the great show and the fun team, I’ve always been after a challenge and this new opportunity is huge for me.”
Tamati, 27, is joining Breakfast, TVNZ’s early morning News and Current Affairs programme, as roving reporter and weather presenter. He joins Paul Henry, newly-appointed co-host Pippa Wetzell, and newsreader Peter Williams as the daily faces of the new-look Breakfast.
Tamati completed an honours degree in Political Studies at the University of Auckland and had no previous television experience when he joined What Now in February 2004. He has packed in plenty of adventure – including jumping from a helicopter, skydiving with Santa Claus, abseiling down waterfalls, bungee jumping off the sky tower whilst brushing his teeth, and taking mid-winter dips in bright red Speedo’s. He’s presented the Spyrider segment on the show from around the country – from Murupara to Moeraki, The Chatham Islands to Stewart Island, and from Kaikoura to the Cape.
Former What Now host and now creative producer, Jason Gunn, says; “Tamati is a remarkable presenter, every week he’s in a small town making stars out of the locals – it’s sad to see him leave, but great to see that the network has big plans for his future!”
TVNZ Head of News and Current Affairs, Anthony Flannery, says Tamati is one of the most exciting young personalities on New Zealand television. “Tamati will bring his own brand of TV magic, and a huge fan base of kids and parents, to Breakfast. His humour, intelligence and strength as a live performer are a great addition to the team.”
What Now is launching a nationwide talent search to ‘Fill Tamati’s Boots’, for the first time offering kids the chance to have a say in who becomes the new presenter. “We’re looking for someone who has a real connection with our audience and can continue the What Now history of telling great stories,” says Executive Producer, Janine Morell. Over the coming weeks, 10 hopefuls will first have the task of impressing the kids to be in the running. The audience will then vote to whittle this down to a final three, who’ll be put through their paces by Jason Gunn. “A lot of people say they want to be on TV, well here’s your opportunity,” says Jason. “I think presenting on New Zealand’s greatest and longest running children’s TV show is the chance of a lifetime. We are looking for someone who will give it their all!”
Would-be presenters are asked to record a short three-minute audition showing off their presenting skills in three different ways: 1) Interviewing children; 2) Playing a game; 3) Explaining how something works. To enter the competition, send in an audition on a VHS, DVD or mini DV tape to: ‘Fill Tamati’s Boots’ at Whitebait TV, 18b Birmingham Drive, Addington, Christchurch by midnight on Thursday, August 16.
Tamati makes his last appearance on What Now on Sunday September 9.