‘He took a chance on me’: Jackie O pays tribute to Brad Lyons
Former Seven Network executive Brad Lyons has died following a battle with cancer.
Lyons, who joined Seven in 1997, is credited with managing blockbuster shows, including Dancing with the Stars, My Kitchen Rules, Deal or No Deal, House Rules and The Chase.
He also worked on music’s first reality TV show Popstars, from which Bardot was born.
“Brad was such an instrumental part during the early days of my TV career,” KIIS FM breakfast co-host and former popstars judge, Jackie ‘O’ Henderson, told Radio Today.
“Despite having very little experience in TV, he took a chance on me and I was cast as a judge on Popstars. He was such a wonderful support and always shared a positive and optimistic attitude.
“He went out of his way to make me feel confident in what I was doing,” said Henderson.
“I truly loved working with him and am so saddened to hear of his passing. My thoughts, love and prayers go out to his family.”
Music mogul and former Popstars guest judge Chris Murphy, who spoke to TMN after learning of Lyons’ passing, said the pair had been planning to catch up and discuss new ideas.
“I once threatened to punch him when I was a judge on Popstars,” Murphy told TMN.
The pair formed a friendship after Lyons gave the green-light to Never Tear Us Apart, the two-part Australian miniseries about the rock band INXS.
“Brad was the man at Seven who gave the go-ahead for Never Tear Us Apart,” said Murphy. “Lyons decision restored INXS’ music to its former glory. God bless our creative Brad.”
Other big local productions under his supervision were The Amazing Race Australia, Beauty & the Geek, Gladiators and Little Big Shots, before departing in 2017.
“On behalf of all of us at SWM, we were devastated to learn of Brad’s passing,” said Seven CEO, James Warburton. “Brad was an instrumental creative force at Seven for two decades.
“We will all miss his energy and passion, which we were so lucky to experience. Brad was a second-to-none creative mind, and we were so fortunate to have a had chance to work with him and get to know him for the truly incredible person he was.
“Our thoughts are with Brad’s wife, Debbie, his three daughters, and all of his family and friends at this time.”
A former newspaper journalist, Lyons was part of Seven’s executive “dream team” that included Tim Worner and Angus Ross.