The debate surrounding around adverts promoting the Everest horse race on Sydney’s Opera House reached new levels on Tuesday, with Studio 10 host Kerri-Anne Kennerely blasting guest Charles Firth over his involvement in an overnight prank that targeted 2GB host Alan Jones.
In response to Jones’ treatment of Opera House CEO Louise Herron during a radio interview last week, Firth and other members of The Chaser team projected Jones’ phone number on the iconic sails of the Sydney landmark. A video of the prank was shared online where it was viewed more than 58,000 times in less than 24 hours. The group of comedians also projected the phone number on Parliament House in Sydney.
“ADVERTISE HERE: Call Alan,” the message read, along with his personal phone number.
Appearing on Tuesday’s episode of Studio 10, Firth attempted to explain the reasoning behind the prank, although Kennerley wasn’t impressed.
“Why did you put his number up there? Why?” she asked.
Her guest explained that he wanted members of the public to call Jones so he would back down and apologise. This morning, the shock jock did somewhat apologise live on air, claiming he “mostly regretted” some of the language he used during his chat with Herron.
“I used some words in these programs about the Everest, and the Opera House, and Louise, which in hindsight I now most regret hearing, having heard the impact they’ve clearly had on some people,” he said. “In relation to Louise, I was tough regarding an issue I and others felt is very important.”
On Studio 10, Firth noted that Jones apologised after the prank, although Kennerley said she thought they took things too far by including his personal phone number.
“I think it’s very clever what you did for your show, but the number?” the Gold Logie winner said. “I just think that was going too far.”
However, things only got more heated when Firth claimed Jones had been horrible to “so many women”.
“What a heck of absolute rubbish,” she said. “Yes, he’s got a temper and he can sound very hard, but there are a lot of times where he’s done amazingly fabulous work and I don’t think it’s got anything to do with being a woman.”
Taking matters into her own hands, the 65-year-old then demanded her guest hand over his phone number, which she wrote on a piece of paper, before flashing it up live on air for Studio 10 viewers to see.
“Call Charles,” she told viewers.
"The opportunity in this country is entirely created by working men & women… This disgusting idea that there's millionaires & billionaires who we have to be grateful for… is ridiculous." @charlesfirth weighs in on the Opera House being used to promote The Everest. #Studio10 pic.twitter.com/dyik4LtB8Z
— Studio 10 (@Studio10au) October 8, 2018
She wasn’t finished yet, asking her guest whether he had personally contacted Jones and Herron for comment. When Firth explained that he thought the radio presenter believed well-connected and rich people were the only ones who could do things in Sydney, Kennerley claimed Firth hated people with wealth and asked him who pays for the ABC.
“I don’t actually work for the ABC,” Firth explained, before joking that he worked for “small non-profit” Triple M.
The interview ended with Kennerley telling her guest they could agree to disagree.