Richard Wilkins (TV presenter)

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Richard Wilkins

Richard Wilkins 2014.jpg
Wilkins at the 2014 ARIA Music Awards, Sydney, 26 November 2014
Born (1954-06-19) 19 June 1954 (age 66)
Auckland, New Zealand
NationalityAustralian/New Zealander
Other namesRichard Wilde, Dickie
Occupation
  • Television presenter
  • radio presenter
  • entertainment reporter
Years active1987–present
EmployerNine Network
TelevisionWeekend Today
Today

Richard Stephen Wilkins AM (born 19 June 1954) is a New Zealand-Australian television and radio presenter. He is the Entertainment Editor for the Nine Network, co-host of Weekend Today and weekend announcer on smoothfm, and Master of Ceremonies.

Biography[edit]

Early life, music and management[edit]

Wilkins was born in New Zealand on 19 June 1954, where he graduated from teacher's college, majoring in English and Music. Using the name "Richard Wilde" he became an aspiring pop singer. PolyGram signed him to a worldwide deal.[1]

In 1980 he brought his band Wilde And Reckless to Australia. He released some singles and a six track EP, and toured with Grace Jones. He left the music stage to work behind the scenes as Promotions and Marketing Manager for Sydney radio stations 2Day FM and 2UW. He was part of the Australian Olympians' group which released the top 30 single, "You're Not Alone".

In 2006 he returned to the stage for his role as Vince Fontaine in the mega-production "Grease: the Arena Spectacular".

Television career[edit]

Along with Joy Smithers, Wilkins was the original host of MTV Australia when it launched on Nine in 1987. MTV Australia set a new benchmark for music television in Australia.

In 1992, he hosted a game show called Keynotes, a summertime replacement for Sale of the Century. In 1999 he hosted the Australian version of Entertainment Tonight with Marie Patane. For ten consecutive years (minus the 1999–00 event), hosted the Sydney New Year's Eve fireworks telecast. On 7 July 2007, Wilkins presented at the Australian leg of the Live Earth concert.

Wilkins has been the Nine's Network's Entertainment editor and presented daily features and interviews in showbusiness from around the world. He has also presented the Nine Network's coverage of The Academy Awards, The Golden Globe Awards, ARIA Awards and many other special events.

In 2019, Wilkins co-hosted Today Extra on Wednesday and Thursday due to David Campbell hosting Weekend Today. In 2020, Wilkins replaced David Campbell as co-host of Weekend Today with Rebecca Maddern.

Reporting live on the deaths of Farrah Fawcett and Michael Jackson on 26 June 2009, Wilkins erroneously reported the death of actor Jeff Goldblum on Today, although later in the program this was verified as a hoax.[2][3]

Publication[edit]

In September 2011 he released his autobiography Black Ties, Red Carpets, Green Rooms, co-written with Carrie Hutchinson, which went on to be a best seller.

Radio[edit]

In May 2012, Wilkins started on smoothfm. He is the host of weekend Mornings (10am – 1pm) on smoothfm 91.5 in Melbourne and smoothfm 95.3 in Sydney.[4]

30th anniversary[edit]

In 2017, Wilkins celebrated his 30th anniversary with the Nine Network.[5] In January 2017, for the twelfth time, Wilkins co-hosted the annual G'Day USA Gala - the annual Australian event in the United States, at the behest of Foreign Minister Julie Bishop. In November 2017, Wilkins returned to host the ARIA awards from The Star in Sydney for the Nine Network.

In March 2020, he was diagnosed with coronavirus.[6]

Honours[edit]

Wilkins was presented with the Variety Club's "Heart of Variety" Award in 2000 for his outstanding humanitarian efforts.

In the 2014 Queen's Birthday Honours List, Wilkins was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia (AM), for "significant service to the community through a range of charities, and to the entertainment industry".[7]

Richard has won two Australian Commercial Radio Awards for Best Music Special - John Farnham and Michael Buble.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Richard Wilkins". Today official website. Archived from the original on 5 May 2009. Retrieved 7 July 2009.
  2. ^ "Richard Wilkins's massive Jeff Goldblum blunder on Today". livenews.com.au. 26 June 2009. Archived from the original on 1 July 2009. Retrieved 7 July 2009.
  3. ^ Hurst, Daniel (26 June 2009). "Website hoax: Jeff Goldblum not dead". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 7 July 2009.
  4. ^ "DMG Radio rebrands stations for gap in market". Archived from the original on 5 November 2013. Retrieved 31 May 2013.
  5. ^ "Richard Wilkins celebrates three decades with Channel 9". Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 28 April 2017.
  6. ^ Cooper, Nathanael (15 March 2020). "Richard Wilkins diagnosed with COVID-19". Brisbane Times. Retrieved 15 March 2020.
  7. ^ "The Queen's Birthday 2014 Honours List" (PDF). 8 June 2014. Archived from the original (PDF) on 30 June 2014. Retrieved 8 June 2014.

External links[edit]

Media offices
Preceded by
David Campbell
Weekend Today
Co-host

January 2020 - present
Succeeded by
Incumbent
Preceded by
David Campbell
Today Extra
Co-host (Thursday & Friday)

January 2019 - December 2019
Succeeded by
David Campbell
Preceded by
Originator
Today
Entertainment Editor

1994 - present
Succeeded by
Incumbent
Preceded by
Originator
Sydney New Year's Eve
Host

1995–962005–06
Succeeded by
Gretel Killeen
Daniel MacPherson