In what has been dubbed the biggest moment in Australian tourism campaigning since Crocodile Dundee, some very clever behind the scenes work has been done to secure Oprah Winfrey to host her show in Australia (and tack on the 300 guests who were in her audience when she made the announcement). Qantas ambassador John Travolta was also on hand to steer the Qantas jet into the studio for maximum effect. Gotta love Oprah.
As well as hosting her much loved talk show at the Sydney Opera House, she is also slated to host at a location in Queensland - possibly in Cairns or somewhere close to the Great Barrier Reef - for this, her 25th and final season of the show.
Winfrey told her audience they could look forward to sailing on Sydney Harbour, wine-tasting in Margaret River and shopping in Melbourne. Also expected to make an appearance as "correspondents" are her favourite Aussie guests, including chef Curtis Stone and actor Hugh Jackman.
Taxpayers will contribute $1.5 million in federal funding and about $2 million from NSW's coffers. (Totally reasonable, in my honest opinion). Former tourism boss John Brown yesterday praised the promotion as an opportunity to match the buzz of Paul Hogan's "shrimp on the barbie" campaign.
I want a ticket!!