Noni Hazlehurst on diversity in kids’ TV: ‘Don’t talk to me about Bananas in Pyjamas’


“Sorry, ask that once more?”

Even down a cellphone line, Australian TV legend Noni Hazlehurst’s double-take is unmistakable.

The query that stopped Hazlehurst in her tracks associated to the 24 years she spent as a presenter on iconic children present Play College.

It was a less complicated time for teenagers TV in these days, the place controversies such because the latest Bluey diversity drama merely didn’t exist.

In an opinion piece on the ABC On a regular basis web site final month, Beverley Wang detailed her love of the ABC Children cartoon — which raked in an unbelievable 7.2 million viewers throughout its newest collection — however posed the query: “Can Bluey be extra consultant?”

Even when the wokest corners of social media existed throughout Hazlehurst’s stint on Play College, they may’ve been prepared to give the present a move, declaring Massive Ted and Little Ted a same-sex couple and thus TV trailblazers.

“You’re stunning me, I’ve obtained no reply to that,” Hazlehurst laughs on the suggestion.

“However don’t talk to me about Bananas in Pyjamas.”

In her newest movie, June Once more, the Logies Corridor of Famer performs the titular June, a profitable businesswoman, whose wallpaper firm and household fall into disrepair in the 5 years she has spent in a nursing house with dementia.

When she miraculously will get a reprieve from this insidious illness, regaining full lucidity for what is going to certainly be a finite time frame, June units about righting all of the wrongs of the previous half-decade, a lot to the bemusement of her grownup children, who’re performed by Claudia Karvan and Stephen Curry.

Bananas in Pyjamas at the Sydney Olympics closing ceremony.
Digital camera IconBananas in Pyjamas on the Sydney Olympics closing ceremony. Credit score: Dallas Kilponen DAK/Alliance

Although there are significantly extra scenes in June Once more performed purely for gags than in The Father, a movie about dementia that opted for psychological thriller vibes as a substitute, there are similarities between Hazlehurst’s efficiency and the one which earned Anthony Hopkins an Oscar.

Unsurprisingly, that’s a comparability the previous Play College presenter can reside with.

“Nicely, sure; yeah, I can,” she laughs.

“I’m simply thrilled that there are some attention-grabbing roles for older actors taking place — it’s a disgrace that all of us have to have dementia to get them.”

June Once more is in cinemas now.

Hear to the complete interview with Noni Hazlehurst at The West Stay hyperlink above.

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