Weekend Sunrise is an Australian breakfast television program, broadcast on the Seven Network and currently hosted by Monique Wright and Matt Doran.

Weekend Sunrise
GenreBreakfast News Program
Presented byMatt Doran
Monique Wright
Sally Bowrey
Simon Reeve
James Tobin
Opening theme(Reach Up for the) Sunrise, Duran Duran
Country of originAustralia
Original language(s)English
No. of seasons10
No. of episodes600+
Producer(s)Michael Pell
Production location(s)Martin Place, Sydney, New South Wales
Running time180 minutes
Original networkSeven Network
Picture format576i (SDTV)
1080i (HDTV)
Audio formatStereo
Original release10 April 2005 –
Preceded bySunday Sunrise
Related showsSunrise
The Morning Show
External links


In 2005 the Seven Network replaced its struggling Sunday morning program Sunday Sunrise with a program called Weekend Sunrise which originally was an hour-long (8 am – 9 am) program with an identical format to Sunrise. Hosted by Chris Reason and Lisa Wilkinson, the program was successful and various critiques at the time called for the program to be lengthened to two hours (7:00 am – 9:00 am) and be extended to Saturday mornings as well as Sunday.[citation needed]

In 2006, Weekend Sunrise was extended from an hour to a two-hour show, running every Sunday from 8 am till 10 am. When Sportsworld returned for the football season Weekend Sunrise settled into a 90-minute format, 8:00 am – 9:30 am. After Sportsworld's series concluded, the show returned to a two-hour format.

Andrew O'Keefe initially temporarily replaced host Chris Reason in 2006, but after improved ratings he was given the hosting position permanently. In 2007, Wilkinson moved to the Nine Network to host Today, and was replaced by Samantha Armytage.[1] In 2008, Weekend Sunrise moved their start time 30 minutes earlier to 7:30 am, to match the new start time of Nine's Sunday program. The program continued to run through to 10:00 am, meaning the program had a two-and-a-half-hour running time.

In 2009, the program's start time was moved even earlier. Originally, it was announced that Today on Sunday (now Weekend Today), the replacement the long-running Nine's Sunday, would run from 7:30 to 9:00 am. But this was changed on 28 January 2009 to 7:00 am to 9:00 am. As result, Seven announced that Weekend Sunrise would also commence at 7:00 am and run through to 10:00 am, meaning the program would go for three hours, the same as the weekday version of Sunrise.[2]

On 13 February 2010, Seven announced that Weekend Sunrise would extend to Saturdays to compete against Weekend Today. The Saturday edition airs in the same time slot as Weekend Today, i.e. 7:00 am – 10:00 am.[3] Saturday Disney, which previously occupied the timeslot, immediately followed Weekend Sunrise,[4] until in 2012 it was permanently moved to 7Two, airing in the same time as Weekend Sunrise. The original Saturday team consisted of Samantha Armytage co-hosting with Larry Emdur with Sarah Cumming presenting the news, Simon Reeve presenting sport and James Tobin presenting the weather.[5]

In November 2011, Adam Boland was appointed executive producer of the program.[6] Boland overhauled the program introducing a new format, a number of new segments and new regulars. These changes were scheduled to introduced on 5 November 2011,[7] however due an apparent server crash, the program was canceled at the last minute.[8] The relaunch took place the following day as a result.

In September 2012, executive producer Adam Boland announced that the show would extend to three hours on Saturday from October.[9] Boland finished with the Seven Network in February 2013 to later join Network Ten. Sunrise executive producer Michael Pell replaced Boland.

In June 2013, Melissa Doyle announced that she would be leaving Sunrise for a national network role, with Samantha Armytage replacing her.[10] Monique Wright initially replaced Armytage on Weekend Sunrise, but it was not until February 2014 in which Wright was made a permanent co-host on the show.[11]

In February 2016, Angela Cox joined and filled-in for Monique Wright as co-host of the show whilst she was on maternity leave. At the same time, Sally Bowrey joined the show as entertainment and social media presenter.

On 4 March 2016, Weekend Sunrise held a Parathon, to raise funds to send athletes to the 2016 Paralympic Games. The program included appearances from stars of Home and Away, My Kitchen Rules and Saturday Disney, as well as performances from Samantha Jade and Russell Morris and was extended to midday.[12] It raised over $1.6 million dollars.[13]

In December 2016, Angela Cox returned to Weekend Sunrise to cover news whilst Sally Bowrey was on maternity leave. In July 2017, Bowrey returned to the show as news presenter.

In 2017 Andrew O'Keefe and Monique Wright created controversy with their interview of The Red Pill producer Cassie Jaye. Jaye became frustrated at the critical line of questioning, so she asked them directly "Did you see the film?" they had to admit they hadn't.[14][15] The interview was posted on Sunrise's Facebook page, but was removed shortly after due to overwhelming negative response to O'Keefe's interview tactics and support for Jaye. O'Keefe was accused of ignorance and poor journalism after he failed to view it before accusing Cassie Jaye of being sympathetic to the views of Paul Elam. Jaye subsequently posted screenshots of emails to prove that Sunrise's producer had receive a copy of the film a month before the interview and plenty of time for the hosts to have watch it in. This was to disprove O'Keefe on-air claim that they didn't receive a copy of the film.[16]

In December 2017, after twelve years in the role, O'Keefe stepped down from the role, citing his desire to spend more time with his family on weekends.[17] Basil Zempilas was announced as his replacement.[18]

In September 2019, Zempilas announced that he will step down as regular host of Weekend Sunrise, citing a desire to spend more time with his family, but will still appear on the show intermittently as a summer and fill-in presenter whenever required.[19]. In October 2019, it was announced that Matt Doran will replace Zempilas on the show from October 12.[20]


Similar to Sunrise, Weekend Sunrise blends a mixture of news every thirty minutes, interviews and light-hearted feature pieces into three hours each morning. Occasionally, Weekend Sunrise may present the show from other locations, however, unlike Sunrise, this is less common.


As with Sunrise, national news updates are provided at the half hour mark, followed by a summary of overnight sport and weather.


Presenter Role Tenure
Monique Wright Co-host 2013–present
Matt Doran Co-host 2019–present
Sally Bowrey News 2016–present
Simon Reeve Sport 2007–2014, 2015–present
James Tobin Weather 2009–present

Current fill-in presenters that have recently hosted or co-hosted Weekend Sunrise include Kylie Gillies, Natalie Barr, Mark Beretta, Basil Zempilas, Larry Emdur, Mike Amor, Ryan Phelan, Mark Riley, Sally Bowrey, Angela Cox, Edwina Bartholomew, Simon Reeve, Denham Hitchcock and Michael Usher.

Other Seven presenters who have either filled in or presented Weekend Sunrise in the past include Matt White, Jessica Rowe, Andrew Rochford, Kellie Sloane, Rebecca Maddern, Rahni Sadler, Ben Davis, Mike Amor, Jillian Whiting and Ben Damon, amongst others.

Previous hostsEdit

Presenter Role Tenure
Chris Reason Co-host 2005 – 2006
Andrew O'Keefe Co-host 2006 – 2017
Lisa Wilkinson Co-host 2005 – 2007
Samantha Armytage Co-host 2007 – 2013
Basil Zempilas Co-host 2018 – 2019
Kylie Gillies Sport 2005 – 2007
Ryan Phelan Sport 2014 – 2015
Simon Reeve News 2005 – 2007
Sharyn Ghidella News 2008 – 2011
Jessica Rowe News 2011 – 2013
Talitha Cummins News 2007 – 2008, 2013 – 2016

Previous hosts of Weekend Sunrise include Chris Reason, Andrew O'Keefe, Basil Zempilas, Lisa Wilkinson and Samantha Armytage. Kylie Gillies was the original sports presenter until she moved to The Morning Show and Talitha Cummins presented the news from June 2007 until July 2008. Sharyn Ghidella presented the news from 2008 until 2010. Larry Emdur hosted Weekend Sunrise on Saturdays in 2010. Sarah Cumming previously presented the news on Saturday until she became the weather presenter on Seven News Sydney in 2011. Samantha Armytage hosted the program from June 2007 until August 2013 and is now host of Sunrise. Jessica Rowe presented the news from 2010 until 2013. Ryan Phelan presented sport throughout the first half of 2015 before Simon Reeve returned to his post following the axing of Million Dollar Minute. Talitha Cummins presented the news from 2013 until 2016. Cummins was later dismissed from the Seven Network whilst she was on maternity leave, Sally Bowrey later replaced her.


Presenter Role Tenure
Steve Hargrave UK/Entertainment correspondent 2013–present
Amber Laidler Sydney reporter (occasional) 2019–present
Paul Marshall Correspondent 2014–present
Blair Late Showbiz reporter 2010–14
Richard Arnold UK entertainment 2009–present
Nuala Hafner Melbourne correspondent 2010–11 (various reports before)
Nathan Templeton Melbourne correspondent, feature stories 2018–present
Bianca Stone Queensland correspondent, feature stories 2018–present
Mark Riley Chief political correspondent 2005–present
Jabba Movie reviews 2013–present
James Mathison Movie reviews 2012–13
Jonathan Coleman Movie reviews 2011–12
Jane Caro Masters of spin 2011–present
Nick Cater Masters of spin 2014–present
Paul Murray All stars 2006–10
Tim Ross All stars 2011–present
Keith Suter Foreign affairs 2005–present
Andrew Rochford Health editor 2014–2015


Because Australia has more than one time zone, Weekend Sunrise is not broadcast live to all of Australia, it is instead broadcast delayed. New South Wales (including ACT), Victoria, Tasmania have Weekend Sunrise broadcast live all year round, Queensland has Sunrise broadcast live in wintertime, but during Daylight Saving Time in Sydney has the program delayed by one hour. The Northern Territory has Weekend Sunrise delayed 30 minutes during winter and 1 hour and 30 minutes during Daylight Savings in Sydney. South Australia has it delayed by 30 minutes all year around, and Western Australia has it delayed by 2 hours in wintertime and by 3 hours during Daylight Savings in Sydney.

Occasionally, broadcasts of Weekend Sunrise are altered during special circumstances. On the morning of 17 July 2010, Weekend Sunrise was extended well past 9am continuing into 1pm in the afternoon when Julia Gillard announced that Australia would be heading to the polls on 21 August. When Weekend Sunrise was covering the Victorian bushfires in February 2009, the show extended its coverage until 11am, with the extra hour dedicated to the events occurring in Victoria.

Neither Sunrise nor Weekend Sunrise air on Christmas Day. Between 2007 and 2014, when Seven had the telecasting rights to the V8 Supercars, Weekend Sunrise did not air on the day of the Bathurst 1000.


Theme songEdit

Weekend Sunrise used Duran Duran's "(Reach Up for the) Sunrise" as its theme song until 2010 when MGMT's "Electric Feel" replaced it. In November 2011, "(Reach Up for the) Sunrise" was reinstated as the theme song.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Knox, David (23 June 2007). "Weekend With Sam". TV Tonight. Retrieved 23 June 2007.
  2. ^ Knox, David (28 January 2009). "Weekend Sunrise wakes up to Today's alarm". TV Tonight. Retrieved 28 January 2009.
  3. ^ Knox, David (7 February 2010). "Sunrise wakes to Saturday". TV Tonight. Retrieved 7 February 2010.
  4. ^ Knox, David (8 February 2010). "Bumped: Saturday Disney". TV Tonight. Retrieved 8 February 2010.
  5. ^ Knox, David (10 February 2010). "Larry and Sam For Sunrise on Saturday's". TV Tonight. Retrieved 10 February 2010.
  6. ^ Knox, David (28 October 2011). "Adam Boland Returns To Weekend Sunrise". TV Tonight. Retrieved 28 October 2011.
  7. ^ Knox, David (31 October 2011). "Weekend Sunrise Gets Serious". TV Tonight. Retrieved 31 October 2011.
  8. ^ Knox, David (5 November 2011). "Weekend Sunrise (Almost) Hits Refresh". TV Tonight. Retrieved 5 November 2011.
  9. ^ Knox, David (11 September 2012). "Weekend Sunrise Extends on Saturdays". TV Tonight. Retrieved 11 September 2012.
  10. ^ Knox, David (20 June 2013). "Melissa Doyle Leaving Sunrise for Primetime". TV Tonight. Retrieved 20 June 2013.
  11. ^ Knox, David (25 February 2014). "Monique Wright Named As Permanent Co Host of Weekend Sunrise". TV Tonight. Retrieved 25 February 2014.
  12. ^ Knox, David (2 March 2016). "Weekend Sunrise: Parathon". TV Tonight. Retrieved 2 March 2016.
  13. ^ Knox, David (7 March 2016). "Gallery: Weekend Sunrise Parathon". TV Tonight. Retrieved 7 March 2016.
  14. ^ Callaghan, Greg (29 July 2017). "Cassie Jaye's film on the men's rights movement shocked Australia. Why?". The Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax Media.
  15. ^ "Men's rights film banned in Australia". Sunrise.
  16. ^ Chung, Frank (15 June 2017). "Seven forces Facebook to remove Sunrise interview with The Red Pill director Cassie Jaye". news.com.au. Retrieved 21 October 2017.
  17. ^ Knox, David (8 December 2017). "Andrew O'Keefe quits Weekend Sunrise". TV Tonight. Retrieved 8 December 2017.
  18. ^ Knox, David (9 March 2018). "Basil Zemphilas Joins Weekend Sunrise". TV Tonight. Retrieved 9 March 2018.
  19. ^ Knox, David (18 August 2019). "Basil Zempilas to scale back Weekend Sunrise role". TV Tonight. Retrieved 18 August 2019.
  20. ^ https://tvtonight.com.au/2019/10/matt-doran-to-join-weekend-sunrise.html

External linksEdit