Maori funding agency coughs up $420K for second series of The GC

Controversial reality show The GC is back in production, having secured $420,000 for eight 30-minute episodes from Te Mangai Pahu (The Maori Broadcasting Funding Agency).

Series two will screen on TV3 later this year.

The amount is the same supplied by NZ on Air for the first series.

It was not immediately obvious that Te Mangai Pahu was taking much professional pride in its decision, which was snuck onto its website after 5pm today  going into the Easter holiday.

MediaWorks spokeswoman Rachel Lorimer told NBR Online the broadcaster would also put its own money into the show. She would not say how much, but did confirm it would be less than $420,000.

Series one secured NZ on Air funding with a a pitch featuring Maori families and small business people who had migrated to Queensland's Gold Coast (aka "The GC").

It copped flak when almost none of the original "cast" made it to the final show. Instead, the action revolved around the night-clubbing lifestyle of a group of buff, telegenic twentysomethings, with more focus on their dating lives than Te Reo.

TV3 says series one rated highly, with an average 5+ audience of 333,000 for its 8pm slot.

The first episode also garnered a record 147,000 downloads from the broadcaster's ondemand site.

Te Mangai Paho says in making decisions, it takes into consideration the government’s long term Maori language goals. These include "That he Maori language will be widely spoken by Maori" - certainly not a description anyone could apply to season one of The GC.

The GC's producers now face the challenge of injecting a little more culture while maintaining the show's prime time appeal for TV3.

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