THERE is not much time for holidays when you are Australian television presenter, director, producer, writer, comedian, occasional actor and author Tom Gleisner.
“My colleagues and I have been busy producing a new series of our ABC TV show Utopia,” Gleisner said.
“We pretty much went straight from doing that into the new season of Have You Been Paying Attention (HYBPA)?”
Fans of the show are rejoicing that Gleisner did not pack his suitcase and returned to quizmaster duties for the seventh season of the popular Ten show, where five comedians see who can remember the most about the week’s events.
“I genuinely love doing the show because I have no idea what answers are about to be given,” Gleisner said.
“All I see is five contestants with a mischievous look in their eye reaching for the buzzer.
“Without doubt, the key to the show’s success is our regular contestants.
“People like Ed Kavalee, Sam Pang, Kitty Flanagan, Jane Kennedy and Denise Scott are always entertaining, even if they are sometime a little under-informed about current affairs.”
In 2018, Gleisner was awarded a Medal of the Order of Australia for his contribution to broadcast media and the community as patron of the not-for-profit, Learning for Life.
It is just one of many accolades for the Working Dog production company co-founder who came up with the idea for HYBPA? in 2012.
“It actually began as a radio quiz during the London Olympics,” he said.
“I would ask questions about the previous day’s events to my on-air colleagues Santo Cilauro and Sam Pang. I remember thinking at the time ‘this could make a good TV show’.”
Gleisner said viewers could expect much of the same comedy mayhem for this seventh season.
“I believe Ten were keen for us to include a Lego building segment but we managed to talk them out of that,” he said.
“There are no real plans to change anything else this year.
“Because we have new contestants each week – and the news itself is always ‘new’ – we figure that keeps the show fresh.”
HYBPA? continues Monday nights on Ten.