6 January – Rob Elliott takes over from Tony Barber as host of Wheel of Fortune. The programme starts 1997 without Adriana Xenides as she takes long term leave as letter turner due to a cancerous breakdown, she returns the puzzleboard in July. Her place is filled by ex-Perfect Match hostess Kerrie Friend. After a notable absence throughout 1996 due in part to hosting Family Feud for the last remainder of the year, John Deeks returns to the booth as announcer – the position had been held by David Day in Adelaide, and Ron E Sparkes in Sydney.
3 February – Australian drama serial Heartbreak High switches over to air on ABC at 6:00 pm from Monday to Thursdays.
11 October – In Neighbours, Helen Daniels dies in her sleep at a family get together. The last ever of the original 1985 cast members Anne Haddy departs the series, she died two years later after a long illness.
This is a list of programs which made their premiere on Australian subscription television that had previously premiered on Australian free-to-air television. Programs may still air on the original free-to-air television network.
This is a list of programs which made their premiere on an Australian television network that had premiered on another Australian television network. The networks involved in the switch of allegiances are predominantly both free-to-air networks or both subscription television networks. Programs that have their free-to-air/subscription television premiere, after having premieed on the opposite platform (free-to air to subscription/subscription to free-to air) are not included. In some cases, programs may still air on the original television network. This occurs predominantly with programs shared between subscription television networks.