This weekend Sunday Night has Billy Crystal and more on Port Arthur.
Aching loss. Remarkable survival. Leadership. It’s been 20 years since the grotesque rampage at Port Arthur and Sunday Night has assembled a remarkable group of Australians who were each dramatically confronted and altered by the atrocity and who resolved to ensure it will never happen again. It is the time that John Winston Howard will never forget – the time that, for many, would come to define his years in office. Six weeks after becoming Prime Minister he was at his Sydney residence, Kirribilli House, when he got a phone call – “There’s been a shooting in Tasmania, turn on your TV”. By the end of that bloody Sunday, Martin Bryant had shot and killed 35 men, women and children. Walter Mikac lost his wife and two children. John and Gaye Fidler somehow survived the maelstrom inside the Broad Arrow Café, but they lost a trio of dear friends. Paramedic Peter James had to attend each and every scene of death. Sunday Night’s Melissa Doyle tells the inside story of how a group of everyday Australians and a Prime Minister decided to act and try to make the nation a safer place. From the moment alone in his Kirribilli office to his bold and contentious plan to ban automatic and semi-automatic rifles, Mr Howard gives Melissa Doyle a unique and detailed insight into what it meant to be the Prime Minister during this bloody chapter in Australia’s history.
LAUGHTER AND TEARS
He’s the enduring funnyman who’s become the ultimate MC. Billy Crystal is at home on a comedy club stage, a late-night TV show or holding an audience of billions and a room full of Hollywood A-listers at the Oscars. He’s also a bona-fide film star who will forever be remembered for his part in that scene with Meg Ryan in When Harry Met Sally. He’s affable, there with a killer line, the consummate showman. But the happy-go-lucky life of Billy Crystal took a massive blow with the death of his best friend and fellow comedian and actor Robin Williams. In a heartfelt interview with Sunday Night’s Rahni Sadler, Billy opens up about the laughter and the tears and how, after his Williams tragic death, he resolved the show must go on. The man who began his career as a stand-up comic has never lost his love of performing live and will bring his latest production to Australia later this year. The baseball tragic may even bring a new curiosity for cricket after a surprise game in the corridors of a New York hotel with our reporter.
ONE SMALL STEP
It fast became a Sunday Night favourite – Denham Hitchcock’s delightful story last year on the junkyard orchestra in Paraguay where kids were making beautiful music with instruments fashioned from rubbish. And among the inspirational images was a fleeting, four-second shot of a two-year-old boy struggling to walk. It was a boy named Toby and he was born with club feet. He wasn’t in the orchestra but his plight struck a chord with Sunday Night viewers. After our story went to air, an Australian mother contacted us. Her son was also born with the same condition and she wanted to help little Toby. And as you’ll see, a single shot in a story can start something special. We go on the hunt to find one little boy in a country of millions. A search led by Sunday Nightviewers, determined to make a difference.
8:30pm Sunday on Seven