#457 – Richard Wilkins On Fatherhood & Pioneering Television/
- September 16, 2019
Richard Wilkins – Australian entertainment and media great
Richard Wilkins has spent more than three decades at the forefront of Australian media and entertainment. His incredible talent and years of experience has led him to become Australia’s most respected and accomplished TV presenter, radio presenter, and entertainment reporter, interviewing stars from around the world.
Richard pioneered Australian TV, becoming a household name hosting MTV Australia, the Sydney New Year’s Eve telecast for almost 10 years consecutively, The Academy Awards, The Golden Globe Awards, the Today Show and also breaking Australia’s biggest entertainment stories and announcements.
Richard has also been made a Member of the Order of Australia for his significant service to the community and the entertainment industry.
Alongside having an incredible career, Richard is an amazing father and an unbelievably generous person.
On today’s episode of The Daily Talk Show we discuss:
– Applying with Russell Crowe to host MTV Australia
– How MTV Australia revolutionised the TV and music industry
– Loving what you do
– Competing for interviews
– Work ethic and being hard on yourself
– Worrying about your appearance on TV
– Being a great parent and chasing your dreams
– Richard’s rules for life
– Where you do your best work
– Wanting to produce a movie
– Pinch yourself moments
– Being prepared for interviews
Richard on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/richardwilkins/
Richard on Twitter: https://twitter.com/RichardWilkins
Email us: firstname.lastname@example.org
Send us mail: PO BOX 400, Abbotsford VIC 3067
The Daily Talk Show is an Australian talk show and daily podcast by Tommy Jackett and Josh Janssen. Tommy and Josh chat about life, creativity, business and relationships — big questions and banter. Regularly visited by guests and gronks! If you watch the show, or listen to the podcast, you’re part of the Gronk Squad.
This podcast is produced by BIG MEDIA COMPANY. Find out more at https://bigmediacompany.com/
It's a daily Talk Show Episode 457 This is a bit of a different one we're in Sydney with Richard Wilkins was wise this significantly did
well right so we don't usually do them from the bar and you've been kind enough to invite us to him and let the scene and Josh
because I'm lazy enough to go anywhere else
also just doesn't usually drink red wine on the show
he sees it first. Well yeah this is I've only ever had we always get confused between mimosas and some houses, which is the drink Mimosa is the drink and some other is the Indian food. But yeah,
yeah. Okay, I'm about to read for.
So I had us that we had a similar so once in a lie on a show. So do we choose
my contact as well when we do it? And
okay, Richard, who else is aside from us, which is probably your worst guest, but who's been someone that you've had here that, that you've really enjoyed over to drop names?
Well, let me just say the most recent thing I did here with cameras and microphones. Well, the way I actually had microphone stands, which is we brought you some of you might want to look at
we brought one step we bought a stand yesterday, specifically for in case Richard wants to stand. We panicked and didn't even ask if you
were the last person to sit. I think he said there was Sam Neill and Brian brown stood there making cocktails as he has done in the past. Yeah, cocktail. Yeah, yeah. Tom Cruise. Yeah. Talking about their new movie Palm Beach. So they were the last names
to join a couple who were in the spa.
And what just Firstly, what's your favorite cocktail? what it was the it in the bar here?
Oh, I'm a bit of a I'm a bit of a GNT guy. Really, there are a few genes there that you pick up around the world, you know, going through a Judy free here and I picked up a couple in the coming through Dusseldorf airport earlier this year. And you put them up there and you think oh, I'll save that for a special occasion. Then of course, one night comes along and empty the whole damn thing. But now I do like machines and I like China. Now I discovered a few while I decided a few years ago that the tonic was the stuff that actually did the damage because there's more sugar and Tommy water
than there was. There's no good so if you're doing alcohol on a diet, what should you just get
rid of the additives? You know, just have sort of gin gin and gin and tonic
is that. Can we mentioned you can read to play?
Okay, whose name is Virginia, and whose nickname is gin? Which
she had the car the number plate before she met me so
so it says Sarah,
we met your son Christian on the way in he has a podcast also. Richard, you've been in the I guess TV landscape for 30 plus years now. What have you What's your observation of these new mediums coming up? You know, podcasting wasn't around 30 years ago. No.
Well, firstly, I'm very, very proud of Christian because he's nominated for an echo, Australian contemporary radio votes. In, you know, way down the list in this podcast. He's up against Hamish and Andy and all that sort of stuff. And it's something that was his idea. And he did it himself. And he went pitched it and he's been renewed for a second season. And, you know, it's a big deal. And now he was so excited. The day came bounding and sit down. I've been nominated for an acro. You know, I want a couple of them. Two of them that that and I know how special that felt. You know, so for him to do that of his own accord. I was so proud. Because the nomination is everything. And after that it's a lottery really. But so I'm very proud. But yeah, you're right. podcasts didn't exist. When I started. Health electricity.
Gene was invented
anime guy for a location gotta hit stuff.
Do you have a favorite in regards to mediums is TV versus righty idea? Do you have a favorite? Oh, well,
you know, TV, I sort of grew up in the early days, the risk of sounding incredibly old. But you know, when I was a kid, not every house have a TV set. And I never really I don't think did the cliche thing of peeping through the neighbors windows, but it wasn't far away from that, you know, they were in short windows, obviously black and white. And it was it was huge. It was new, it was exciting. And I love the idea of television right from the start. But music was my thing. You know, I grew up playing in bands, I played the violin, first violinist in the school orchestra and, you know, hit chorus during the school choir and blah, blah, blah. So music was in my blood. And I got a music scholarship to go to a toffee boys boarding school in New Zealand. And you know, it was when the Beatles kind of came along in the mid 60s that my you know, train D is picked up and I I knew it wasn't just about the the haircuts and the screaming girls, there was really something significant happening and in the music land. So it was music that I loved and got into. And then after playing in bands and stuff, I started singing on TV a couple of times in New Zealand. And when I brought my band over here, it was the big land of opportunity. And I saw and I just told everyone I spoke to that I wanted to work in television, and I did a couple of little bits and pieces. But when that MTV opportunity came up, I just grabbed it with both hands. I audition along with I think every actor and model and DJ in Australia and was lucky enough to be in the right place at the right time. So TV was the thing for me, you know, I always wanted to work in television. And so it came to pass.
Do you have an interesting perspective on Australia be spending so much time speaking to International Paper, I guess the MTV example. They were doing it in the us it was a proven concept when they brought it here. Was it sort of a different version?
Well, yeah, it was very much an experiment. Because we were the first spin off if you like, outside the United States, MTV was going gangbusters. It revolutionized the music industry. Suddenly, it wasn't just about the music you were making was about the way you looked and you know, the video clip and all the bands like, you know, in excess or at the flood Crowded House or the forefront of all that bang, there was a whole new ballgame. But yeah, when we came Mr. Packer, Kerry Packer came back from as I understand it a sort of a program buying spree and bought a whole lot of stuff from Viacom, and announced to the bosses at Channel Nine, we've got this thing called MTV as well. Because back in the day TV used to finish it 10 or 11 at night, way back when you guys were before you are twinkles, and you
single the signal would cut. Is that what it is? Yeah,
channel I had a guy you know, standing down on the rock somewhere, singing Freddie really in it or so someone with guns. That's not right, but had this great song from City of Sydney. And you know, when he sang that song, bang, it was back to the test pen. So Mr. Peck of being the revolutionary and Pioneer that he was, he figured this would be nice, cheap programming, let's just throw MTV on at night. And it's got all these music videos and things from America, what could possibly go wrong? But of course, they then realized that given the release dates and clearances and rights and whatnot, that we would have to produce our own version here. I read about it in the paper and told them by agent who was at the time Russell Crowe's agent, you know, balance sheet. Russell wants to go for that, too. So I remember we both went up an audition. So you got it. Yeah, I Russell still pays me. International Oscar winning successful movie star, did he become a TV star are in Australia, you know,
it was very bare bones, MTV would to what it has become or
disagree with that, you know, we I think we raised the bar significantly. You know, prior to countdown at habits, you know, time dare I say, you know, countdown was revolutionary when it started. But we came on air on the 16th of April 1987. And, you know, we had a nice big studio set in a channel nine. And we had the advantage of all those bumpers, you know, the playoffs and playoffs the the biggest stars in the world saying I want my MTV, so we had a it was a pretty, you know,
in the sense of it was just music. You look at MTV now
sitting together on a couch to how it's like, I mean, they're just taking it crazy now, I guess times
and watch a lot of MTV of light. I mean, I think there was a time when MTV in the states didn't play a lot of music. But we Yeah, we were sort of running on a smell of an oily rag. But we had that those production qualities and those assets that we could use that really gave it a pretty good look. And then when we couldn't afford to do big budget productions of bands, you know, we did stripped down version so I wanted to call it live in the in the in the props, babe, someone else we didn't call it that. But MTV America liked what we did. And they called it unplugged. So we were sort of the pioneers of that I'm pretty proud of most of the stuff we did back Back in the day, we did MTV for six years to the day, the energy of you know, landing that role. And what you would have brought to it is, you know, fresh faced TV host to what it is now and the longevity of your career. What's, what's stayed there, what things do you think have fueled that along the way that keep going? Well, I thought I was, you know, I felt very comfortable slipping into that role. Because otherwise, you know, we had to ride around school, I had to write my own scripts, which I was happy doing. I love writing. You know, I've got fear of music knowledge have played in bands have played an orchestra, I think, you know, I've known the music industry from a lot of different perspectives and angles. So I felt the only thing I hadn't done a lot of was, you know, talking to a camera. And nowadays when people you know, try to embarrass me by playing some of those old clips, I'm talking about the very end here we go. Now that was that was the new video from Crowded House coming up with a fine Young Cannibals. This is MTV, you know, it was like, just slow down, dude, you know? So I was very excited. And, in hindsight, quite nervous. And I, you know, but I guess that's experience Didn't
you have to worry about the teleprompter catching on fire back then? Well, I don't know if I
did I have a teleprompter in those days. But I remember when I started doing bits and pieces for the today show. Yeah, the teleprompter these days is all you know, I consider my dressing room, you know, 730, and be talking stuff in there. And it goes straight in there. And bang, I can walk on the set and
blame someone else for a spelling mistake
when you do it yourself. Right. And also, you know, I like to say what I've written. Yeah. But yeah, you're right. In the old days, they there was, it was all sort of typed onto paper, which used to go through and there was, I guess, a camera underneath there that sort of spat it out onto something that and then the camera in front of it had a mirror of a 45 degree angle. So shut up there. And then you do it like that. But on occasions, if you sort of pause too long, and the paper and stayed over the heat for too long, you could actually see your, your script catching on fire in front of your very eyes, flash was quite exciting,
in 14 speaks highly of the people of your work ethic in and how much time you spend, and I can imagine that it's something you need to love the process. Do it. Do you love the processes? Yeah.
It's not it's not a hobby, you know, this is what I was what I do. Obviously, it's more of a, you know, it's more of a lifestyle than a job. You know, my phone is always on and always, you know, talking to people and finding out what's happening. And I like to be up with what's going on. And, you know, it's it's not competitive, but there are other people out there various networks, and, you know, you want to get the big interview, you want to get the stories.
So how do you deal with competition? And how do you how do you reconcile it? How do you?
Well, you know, with their their thing, Molly and I was sort of fierce competitors back in the day, you know, we'd be battling each other for that, you know, Rod Stewart, interview and stuff. I think I'm less competitive these days. And Angela Bishop, who's who's you know, the entertainment person at channel 10. She's a dear friend, she lives couple of streets away here and she calls it the entertainment precinct. And we were both flying back on a plane from Los Angeles. So, Saturday night, I flew up there Saturday morning to speak to Olivia Newton john spent the day with her and sort of went up and back in the same day and and you've been up there a couple of days. But you know, she was she was I said, What have you been doing she said visit to capsize, like I said, Olivia, goes to a Tuesday you can't beat me. So you know, it's um, and of course, you know, sunrise on on Channel seven. It when is a lovely person, she does their entertainment. And it's, you know, where we all find ourselves in the same place on a number of occasions, sitting in the same sort of green room, waiting to talk to whoever's to borrow or whoever's there, and there's a great camaraderie. And I've always said that, you know, will, will play the ball, but never play the man. And I've it's an adage that I've espoused right through your spouse run through my career. Do you like sport? Yes, but but I think it's a good one. Yeah, that's great. You know, you'll you'll tackle the show, and you will try to beat them with some, but I've never puts it on any of my goodness.
I mean, I think with the media consumption through Facebook, Instagram, all these things, I think it can be distracting. We're looking left and right at everyone around us, which I know that I've felt a bit, you know, anxious when I'm not in the position I want to be. And so there's a lot of noise happening. Was this something when you know, the 10 years in decreases something was there? Was it more noisy for you then? Or unless? So now?
Yeah, I think so. Because, you know, in the early days, you just going at 1000 miles an hour. And you know, you never smell the roses, I said MTV went for, for six years to the day, we did two three deals. until the time when MTV wanted to do their have their own channel. The Fox, stellar was up and running. So
what was the difference then? So was did so did nine on
MTV back in the for six years on the rights to broadcast a program called MTV, basically, in hindsight, is sort of a late night rock and roll entertainment show
and where they only licensed was it always the plan that it was eventually going to? I don't think
there was a long term plan. There was a three year plan. Let's do this for three years. MTV starts April 16. Gentlemen, so it was a channel nine production,
the Viacom had given a license. Yes. And then did they take take that back and start doing it themselves as
we did two three year deals at which time? It was a kind of a clunky marriage, to To be honest, you know, when Wimbledon came on, MTV sort of went off. And, you know, so budget pay TV was was up and running, and MTV naturally wanted to do their own channel, which they did.
I mean, I think for a lot of people work can be blurry when it comes to friendships, you know, you develop these might people and mates at work, when you deal with some of the biggest names in the world where you're on a very personal basis with them chatting back and forth? Is they I mean, have you developed really close friendships with people that you end up on the red carpet? Or is it like that when you're working in an office and you're like, oh, there's john
macaque never sort of sorted to be friends. People, you know, it's it's a it's a kind of a lot of the red carpet is just like a zoo Really? moving. You know, it's like a tsunami of superstars. Really? Yeah. You're just grabbing something and, you know, editing it all up together. So it looks, looks fantastic. But there's no opportunity on a red carpet to strike up a friendship at all. But, but you know, I've made friends with a few people, but I've never sort of deliberately sort Gee, I'd love to be mates with this person. But yeah, you know, people like Michael blue Blake, Keith, Keith Urban, Nicole. Several. I don't see that necessarily dropping those. But Cindy Cyndi Lauper, I first met Cindy in Japan.
But I think that's why I ask is, it's an unusual, like, you're in a unique position where it's, it's just
what you do. But if someone sits there, it's nice to you for 20 minutes, half an hour doesn't. Everyone's doing their job on Facebook, personally.
Lunch next, top friends of mine.
Ben Fordham was telling us a story about how you have become good friends. Yeah. I mean, he talks so highly of you. It's one of those, you know, but for me, for an international audience who isn't familiar with the Australian media landscape? You are Australian royalty? Oh, yeah. And so I think that like we don't know the difference. The but Benny was telling us a story about you being on the phone, I guess this plays into the getting the exclusive and the friendship, where you were saying, you get you get a call you pick it up? Oh, hey, Robbie. Really? On the back?
It was Robbie Williams. And do you recall this one?
It's got the best initials in the business out Robbie. There's a picture of him up there. So yeah, I love Robbie a lot. You know, he's had a what I'm trying to think what the story is had something to do with it, baby. Oh, yeah, that was that. Robbie's a lovely fella. And, you know, we cross paths 1000 times. And, you know, I've introduced him at areas and things. And in fact, I remember the first MTV Europe awards. I went to see with Michael Hutchence. Well, there's another way and and some other people in the French transport people had done the big shut down. No one does a strike like the French. So now we could get out of town. I remember you two guys were there. And they were all going to chatter a bus up to Belgium and try and fly out for there. And the Bon Jovi guys didn't know what they were going to do with John's wife, Dorothea was quite happy because she said, I'll just go shopping for a couple of days could no one could get out of town. And Robin was they had just left take that. And I think there was the first time I met him, he was enjoying the first fruits of being a solo star. But we've crossed paths, many, many times. And I like him enormously and respect him and see, see him for all his all his talents and all the sort of flaws and see the difficulties that he's been through and all the triumphs as well. And we've had some great times and nights out. But yeah, there was one time when I heard that he he and his beautiful wife had just had a new BB and I sent him a little at night. Thanks, congratulations, you know, wonderful, happy days, you know, love to, and he sent me a note next year. I think we're going to put our finger forgotten the name that was a child chart or something. He said go. I said, All right. So I sent send out a tweet, you know, hey, congrats. Congrats to Robbie in the family for blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. And, and he called me back and he said, My.
But I guess you did that for us?
No, I don't think you know, I was actually mortified. Because, you know, unwittingly Yeah, I tried to do something nice. And that sort of blew up the
business. I did the same thing with jewels land, but I just don't have a following. I mentioned that he'd had a baby but jewels land, I'm sure you've worked together the nine jewels is that person for me that I can single handedly say has been the most influential, influential on my career and pushing me to where I'm going for you. Is there someone that you could single handedly say that person? I'm sure there's a bunch of others, which, you know, for me, there are a few others, but Jules really is that person that that has helped me.
I mean, I've talked to a lot of people. And notice the way they've done things and navigated situations. But, you know, I wasn't really, there was no one there, who I was going over, I want to follow in that person's footsteps. Because, you know, I was, as I saw it, and see, it was sort of sailing uncharted waters, you know, what I was doing, this was the growth of the television that I sort of when I came along in the 80s. tv was still a major growth industry these days, I guess, with you know, so many with the internet and so many other streaming services and what you guys are doing and the pie sort of shrinking, and everybody's sort of trying to hang on to what they got. But you know, that I realized that it was a great opportunity. And if I could, you know, be good at what I do. I'm just trying to be good at what I do the best that I can be what I'm trying to do that that's that's all I can do. So, you know, I've worked really hard and had some wonderful time having some wonderful times. Yeah. You know, I think people with great worth work ethic could also be in the category of people who are hard on themselves about the work they do. Is that is that you It's a bit like me Yeah, I'm I remember flying back from speaking to Olivia, as I mentioned on the weekend, and I was just I was kicking myself all the way back. There's one question I wished I'd asked her. I said what is
she Yeah, she was
a bit hard on and I'm always remember, you know, you always sort of think about that thing. Rather than and those one when we went to Jamaica for the launch of the Bond movie you know, and we didn't have the exclusive with Daniel Craig and all that was fantastic. And went to Michael Parkinson in London recently did a special with him with Maastricht for hulu's for for Andre Reed and you know I get to do a lot of kind of cool things
so how do you answer does it if it
was hard on myself my god she saw what it needed to see the photo and go Couldn't you smile? Watch back with you they may come on
up watch back you stuff much
I don't sit there pouring over it but you know when it goes to a Yeah, you know, just do this and here it is. Jamaica's went to Woodstock to you know recap the 50 years since since then. And you look at it and you think why did I Why did I wear that puffer jacket on national television that someone said was probably quite cold. Yeah, it was called TV such a visual medium. And this as you get older, you gotta remember this. Smaller?
Yeah, I mean, my core isn't very, very much struggling.
The visual thing like I'm very much someone who has fluctuated in weight and things like that. The TV medium? Does it put the extra pressure on you from that sort of aesthetic or personal? I should probably let it put more
pressure on me than it actually does. You know, over the years people give me crap about my hair.
Look at your son, Christian. That's seriously. You
know, I've always had my head grows so much I get a cup every 10 days, I guess like
bamboo. Yeah. But it's very upsetting that because that's the drain that's that's the equivalent of someone saying like, I can't put on white people can
they say what did I actually say? I think
colons and stones skits and stuff about my
Actually no one, no one could care less about my hair than I do. And that's probably a problem because I get out of business.
Isn't that funny? People care more about things and what is the other way?
Well, I get up in the morning from black jeans on put a white shirt on which is hanging up nicely in my dressing room. But gentlemen, put a jacket on and a tie they like they like me wearing a tie these days, which is fine. But you know, I think it's it's much it's much harsher on on the women on TV, you know, the people that we work with, as you know, cow famously displayed a couple of years ago when he wore the same suit for a year. Now.
Now I mentioned your watch.
It was a different watch. But you know, I think that said it all. That was really a powerful thing that he did was the say, you know that the girls get so much crap, you know, you know, where'd you get that dress from such and such? Well don't get any more stuff from it? And am I get an awful lot of nice compliments as well. But, you know, it's the job was just doing a job. And you have to do all this other stuff as well.
How do you deal with I mean, there's been huge changes it there's been everything from the me to movement, all of that stuff is going through the entertainment industry, I guess in a big way. Having seen the whole journey, seen it from the 30 years and seeing what was acceptable then to what it is today. How do you reconcile it?
Well, I think it's vast, really. And it's only when you look back at sort of all movies I watch Blazing Saddles, on my boys wanted to have a nice machine, which is very noisy. Now it's
great. How often does it make guys, you know, whenever it needs to
have filtered and sort of cool,
Richard, do you mind if I grab the
Blazing Saddles, it's probably before your time I don't even know when it was out. But but it is so racist. And yeah, you know, misogynist, and God is just an idiot. It was a big hit Mel Brooks, you know?
Did you have that lens at the time? Like, Would you say that's a racist film? Or was it just?
I don't think so. I think it was, I think it was very, I think we've come a long way in a quite short space of time without necessarily realizing it. I think we only maybe realize it now when the pendulum starting to swing the other way. And we're all going where's this? You know, what's this? Pity PC over correctness, which I think that there is a fair bit of, but I think we're all certainly in the broadcasting medium. I think we're all follow my full of, of what you say. And or more. So what you don't say when and how you couch, you know, terms and things. Because, you know, when you live on air for several hours a day, you know, there's the enormous number of landmines that you could potentially standing.
I mean, swearing so I know that is why you probably it's a filter never swear and so when you swear on this
well when you walk into a TV studio, and you've got a mic well, soon as you've got a microphone on you know rule one is you never swear or say bad things about the boss should say those anyway. I think things have changed you know, he just looked at the stand up comedians and you know stuff that ostentatious and Vince certainty in those early days of stand up and and the comedy scene right around Australia you know, Rodney rude you know, Rodney rude couldn't be Rodney rude.
Christians heading off, I think where you go.
I know. Tommy always gonna shoot and he might be light. So in terms of seeing this landscape change, what what of the TV stations main set in stone, as far as rules, obviously,
some obvious, but rather than sit us down and go, okay, children today, you know, we're not allowed to say bagger on it. Now, there's not there's nothing like that. I mean, there's the code of ethics that as a journalist, you're required to read and you've got to know when things are assertions or allegations or when they're fact and what you can say, so that you don't get the network into trouble. So that could potentially lose its license or anything like that you have there are legal requirements for anyone going on air and saying anything that's potentially dangerous, or inflammatory, but I just think it's more the tone these days, you know, as to what what you say about women and ladies, and, you know, it's just it's almost a different vernacular than it was 30 years ago. What
about bringing out snakes and you know, you know, things nice nice,
like an actual I guess,
you have to call it Mr. Rip.
Rip Thomas ripped off. Sorry,
you know, when
Stevie wouldn't beaten live on, on camera, you
know, so just like insurance.
You're talking about dying on?
Yeah, I'm talking about, you know, getting on camera,
what we have to sign. You have to sign a form these days, when you do anything that, you know, is dangerous. I mean, we did a, there was a stunt just a couple of months ago with Sonia Kruger and I were parked on top of this thing where we had those crusty demons flying, flying over us and doing loops on I wasn't fond of that at all. But of course, someone comes around with a clipboard and says, Do you need to sign this? We go, what is it? So we're not in trouble if you die?
Because you have to okay.
So, you know, if that's what Yeah, yeah.
I mean, is that a vast difference to 15 years ago, five years ago, me stunts, you
haven't had a lot of
the, the International side of things. So when you were talking about MTV, you're mentioning the fact that you had to create something different for the Australian market in regards to I guess, what was available, what we wanted to we didn't have to,
but we wanted to reflect what was going on here. We didn't just want to back to that conversation. didn't just want to flick that. Well, it was would never happen. But we couldn't just flick the switch and play American MTV because half the Australians wouldn't know who they were. And we wanted to be playing, you know, cultures in excess midnight, or is it changing, though?
Now? Is it is globalization happening? Based on people consuming? You know, things like social media, and
I don't know how to answer them. asked me the same question a different way.
Yeah. The publicist. Yeah, no, we love you push back. So I guess, when you're in Australia, and don't have access to things like the internet, the consumption might actually be more significant than today, where there's a lot more sort of
culture, that's the same, I think I know what you're struggling to suggest. I still bump into people, you know, who come up well, meaning Lee and said,
I'm driving by the way,
which is lovely to see you, you know, you, you, you forged you created my taste in music when I used to watch MTV all the time. And, you know, you forged my, my musical sort of understanding and I, my first instinct is sort of sorry, oh, you should have an entire or so. And but you know, I guess there are a lot of people who who did you know, we were sort of an influential show, we were we were there 1030 to 130, Friday and Saturday nights, biggest stars in the world coming in live on the show sitting on that comfy leather couch. And you know, we have access, as I said to all the MTV News stuff around the world. So we and we got all the videos first. And back in those days, you know, we got a world premiere video from Ice House, you know, and that was big deal for us to break stuff like that, for the first time in the world. Great job.
Richard, I think we could talk black and blue about your career. Because it's, I mean, I grew up with it. And I mean, as young as my son is, he even grew up with it, too. But you also do have five beautiful kids. That's correct. And you've been able to afford your massive, you know, successful career. I worry for myself about trying to be a man of the world. And also, I'm 31 just turned 31. I've got a two and a half year old, but I feel moments where I
feel a bit.
I feel bad for wanting to chase my dream so hard, and also have the family.
And I don't think you should feel bad about that a tool. I think everybody feels that way. One way or another I I had an I had a Down syndrome, some that's probably relevant that I had Adam, when I was 18, I met a 16 year old school go at six for the first time. She fell pregnant, we got married, we had a baby. He was down syndrome. And I wrestled for a while as to what to how to what to do for him with him. Because I had dreams too. And you know, that the marriage didn't survive? Obviously, no one said it would I tried to. We both tried. Yeah. But eventually, you know, I put him in a in a home, where we still saw him and took him out for weekends. And, you know, and he ultimately went and lived with another family. But I've never had him adopted or not that there's anything wrong with that. But you know, he's always been my son. And I've always been a big part of his life and he and mine. But yeah, I've I've sort of felt bad because I came to Australia that was in New Zealand where Adam still is. And we don't see each other nearly enough. But he, he loves it here. He doesn't travel that well. So we don't see him here as much as we'd like to leave some space here in his own, you know, loves jumping in the pool splashing around.
That's another thing I'm talking about is Ben Folds mentioned the two poles, but we'll get to that.
I've started, but I felt very
guilty about, you know, putting my dreams ahead of Adam, if you like because some people said Oh, no, the place for these children is in the home. And you've got to do this and do that. And you're just shopping out your you know, your responsibilities. And I did. I did wrestle with that. But But ultimately, Adam is is better off because I you know, got stuff out of my system and did what I want to do. And so, but yes, Adam got me started in that in a big way. Was your counselor here today? I wouldn't worry about wanting to good dad and she drinks
amazing having a counselor at a bar.
What I want is if you were to say Richard Wilkins rules to life, which rules your rules to live to live for, for life. For life philosophy for life, that's a book either Yeah, so if you are alive, what are some of those key things that are the non negotiable for you? So family and all those things? How do you make sure that you have little check ins or stuff that you make sure that you do every week or every month or every day? Now you make me feel very
prepared for life? Now I know I know that have daily check off so I you know, I want to be a good dad. That's, that's the primary
What does that mean? What is being a good dad mean?
Well, I guess it means knowing that your kids are all safe and secure and happy and loved. And I do that with varying degrees of success. You know, welcome to my daughter today is riding a horse down by Bateman's bank Christians here haven't spoken to Adam. Becky my daughter's with her beautiful baby 18 month old child James, her husband had his birthday yesterday. You know, Nick, my son's working, have them in an edit suite making good TV. So you know, they're all happy, they're all doing their things. That's that that gives me sauce. You know, if there's something going on with one of the kids then that that's the sort of stuff that makes me keeps me up at night, if you like, but I and then you got to be happy in yourself and you got to be a good person. My mom was very wise. And she always said, if you if you never tell a lie, where if you always tell the truth, you never have to remember anything. And that is a good adage for life. I think you know, there was a time in my life when things are a bit crazy. And you know, blah, blah, blah, and you're telling someone this and someone else that you have to remember. But you know, I love I have no secrets. You know, Virginia and I were so good. Most secrets asked me a question. I'll tell you the truth. And I think that's a good principle and I love it.
I love it. There's an energy that comes with telling lies. To you and overtake you,
is that been a learning is that having to experience it before you sort of get to that point.
I mean, I've never done anything majorly wrong but you tell a few little fibs along the way and then they eat you up and then you tell one foot and you go to tell 100 more to cover up the first one you know we see that in court every day Let alone and daily life but now I love having a good pure life and the older I get the sort of pure I want to be I just want to be a good guy. I want to be happy in myself healthy happy. Work hard. Be a good partner be a good father. Be good friends. Build a happy home The older I get the less I like walking out the front door I'll tell you that. You know I love going to work. But I love being home too. And this is my century here. And you know when people come in the front door they're always welcome and good to welcome them in. That's was good to see.
I think you've got it dialed in like the you've got the sun is going so you play the music that
I want to feel comfortable here.
Do you have travel things that you do age everyday routines every time you travel? Because you're doing it so much do you have this is this is how I when I go into a hotel room I do these
quarters that if light
comes up in flying colors. You know we will have a favorite that's that's mine. They look after me I've done a lot of you know stuff for them corporate gigs and whatnot hosted a USA stuff that clients have been involved with. For many years back in the day. I did a lot of brochure launches for quite a solid so I know a lot of the people they're beautiful people it's an awesome airline. It's quite a good plug wasn't
Yeah, we make money out of
this lovely to walk on a flight tickets seriously.
You know in London or LA?
You know, and you feel like you're halfway
there recently about the kangaroo flying through the sky. Yeah, that makes me feel and I don't have
You know who wrote that, don't you? Randy Newman wrote that song. No, I didn't. revenues coming out here for two feels like
it's a great song.
Ya know, once upon a time I used to, I was probably busier but I had more stuff, different stuff on the go. I have columns and things and I used to put a lot of stuff into my travel kit and I tell write that on the plane or read it on the plane. I'll listen to that on the plane or so by the time I got on the plane, I have a pile of stuff and I sit there working away. And now I'm completely the opposite i when i get on that. That's his future.
Yeah, sure. You can
pause the recording.
Yeah, we can say hello, hello.
Okay, yeah, I'm going to move 15 minutes. Which
is Josh and Tommy and
you're gonna go okay.
That's all right. Yeah, so the, you were talking about that they used to be a bit busier
now. But now I know, when I get on the plane, that is my time. And you know, normally I'm knackered from flying back from LA that, you know, QF 12 leaves at 1030 at night. And by that time, you've had a full day's work and go to the lounge and have a sorry, I'm you gotta go out, have a drink, you know, bite to eat. And sometimes I'm about three hours into the flight my chairs, you know, still sort of straight up, right. So, you know, I just love relaxing on those flights now. Watching a movie?
Is it a place that you can get worked down or you just discard? Oh, that's
it. Yeah, just just let the brain rattle away for a while. But then just switch off because normally I've got a QF 12 lands at six o'clock. And normally I just go straight to work and straight into Channel Nine and do stuff in there. So um, yeah, the plane is my as I people always say, Michael Douglas and Richard. Now we're going to have dinner tonight. We're going to go and have a few drinks and data there and stay the night and then fly back to Australia tomorrow. No, Michael got a few drinks and dinner. Then I'm going to the airport and flying all the way back to Sydney. So you are crazy. So you got to sleep somewhere. You might as well do it on the plane. Yeah, wake up back home. But then he was the first. That was the first time with Michael that I that I sort of did that turn around and the second day. But it sort of works for me. You don't have time to get jet lag.
What about the place that you switch on you? Do you work with Fernando a lot of authors that I need to get away to this place and sit here and then have a bakery trade after otherwise nothing gets done.
It's interesting you say that because I learned something from Peter fit Simon's the very accomplished author, who's married to Lisa Wilkinson, who of course I worked with for many years and been a friend of mine for a long time. And Pete always says that when you when you have because sometimes I can be lying in bed. And I can write a script in my head, or an intro or this or that or some questions for you. And it will be so clear. And you think ah, yeah, I've got it. Anything, I'll be able to remember that. And you wake up in three hours and you forgotten the whole damn thing was Peter was his harvest the freshness. In other words, when he's writing and when that when it comes to him, which I think it's normally in the morning, he just gets up, sits down, bang done it and harvests the freshness. And that's that was a great gift from him. And that's what I do so in the middle of the night, if you're thinking also mentioned get back to sleep without having to try. Okay, so the first question tomorrow.
You know what I mean? Yeah, hoping to remember.
That's when you
got this great idea for the late night show. Yeah, yeah.
Is there anything in life that you feel like you haven't done yet? Or that's on your list that you want to do? having a dinner tonight? I'm really looking forward to
I'm not really I'm sorry.
What I want to do you know, I want to produce a movie, I've got a couple of ideas got have a lot of friends who make films, that's, that's something I'd like to do. I like I love working in television, I like the daily thing. You know, I see friends of mine who do make movies and make records and and I'm not that sort of person, you know, who have something and over a period of a year or 18 months, they create it and they polish it may make it shine and bang, there it is, you know, made this movie but you know, I'm I'm working in an industry where we it's a different skill set. But you were churning stuff out on a on a daily basis. And how can we come to that moving? And that was a lot of crap. It took me a year. Yeah. I love that the pace of what what I do. And I you know, sometimes I feel like I should slow down a bit having done it for a while. But other times I think well, I'm just getting the knack of this now. I enjoy talking to people I think that's my favorite thing. You know, doing a nice, doing a good sit down interview with, you know, Bruce Springsteen, or, or Paul McCartney, you are one of the icons of the bill Neil fan, or Mick Fleetwood, who I interviewed the other day, Brian Brown, or Sam or, you know, the, I guess the people who've got a few more miles, you know, on the belt, I'm interested in their journey. And you know, how they got started and what they did with the disappointments and hiccups along the way. So I, you know, I love talking to people and finding out what makes them tick.
Do you still have like moments where you have to pinch yourself 30 years in.
Now, I've never really done that. In fact, maybe I should more because sometimes, don't take it for granted. But, you know, we flew to London recently, actually, Virginia, and if she's good, well, I flew to London recently and dinner, we were in France. So it wasn't that far. But I'm going to London and we had a couple of hours with some Michael for a special on the Nine Network. And I obviously prepared for it. But you can only prepare so much. Because you don't want to just ask a series of questions on a piece of paper in a list. So you've got to be prepared to duck and weave and go with the tide, depending on how the conversations flowing. But you know, being so well prepared or so. So prepared, if you like when he finally walks in. Hello, how you doing? So So Michael every season, and it's not a pinch yourself moment, you realize you're in the presence of greatness. But yeah. Because you've, you're prepared and you're sort of confident. It's it's not a pinch yourself moment, it's really a job of work to be done. Do both pros and you get on with it?
Yeah. What is? Yeah, I was just because that one is prepared me to
prepare my means.
Taking your phone seriously, you know, being been reading your notes, making notes thinking of, you know, if I asked him this, and he says that, then Where would I go after that? And what would be the follow up after that? Then how could you not just want to ask stuff that, you know, you've read in the newspaper and asked the same questions because you know what, you're going to get the answer. Do you want to, you know, challenge him and yourself and have men, you know, do something interesting. That that's good for both of you. Richard, welcome. Thank you so much. You've been so generous, letting it sit at your bar and have a chat. We love having conversations too. And this is another one of them. Well, good luck with the with the podcast, but welcome. Thank you. Thank you. Another topic classic, you know,
yeah, well, I'm definitely
I think you can say funny five minute Oh, sorry about that. Really? I'm not institution for people with problems.
Or more problems.
Thanks. Thanks. It's been
it's been growing so much, Richard. It's a daily talk show. Hi, the daily talk show.com. If you want to send us an email, you can also review us on Apple podcast. Otherwise, we'll see you tomorrow. See you guys catch up.