The highly successful television producer Julie Christie is seen with Matthew Ridge (left) and Brent Todd (right) on Melbourne Cup Day 2009. Christie grew up on the West Coast and began work on television programmes under Neil Roberts of Communicado. In 1991 she founded Touchdown Productions, which quickly developed a number of reality television programmes, some based on overseas formats, such as Changing rooms, Trading places and Treasure Island. Christie's style of television appealed to broadcasters who were looking for unthreatening entertainment. Touchdown was successful in selling Christie's own formats to overseas broadcasters, including some in the United States, and in 2006 the company was bought by the Dutch media group Eyeworks. Christie remained as CEO of Eyeworks New Zealand and Australia. Former rugby league players Ridge and Todd have both starred in a number of her programmes – Todd in Moro sports extra and Ridge in The mating game.
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New Zealand Herald
Photograph by Norrie Montgomery
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