Coincidently July 14 is the date in 1980 that Daryl Somers first appeared in the Family Feud hosting role, taking over from Tony Barber who had moved on to Sale Of The Century. Daryl took on the new role nine years and two days after starting his first regular gig on television as host of Cartoon Corner on GTV 9. He was “discovered” as a contestant on Nine’s New Faces.
Sale Of The Century was considered to be a huge programming gamble for Nine. The Sullivans had been a success for them at 7pm, particularly in Melbourne where it was set and produced. Kerry Packer approved the decision to strip The Sullivans at 7pm in 1978 because A Current Affair was a ratings disaster for them in the slot. It was felt the war time drama was too slow over an hour and would work better over a shorter duration, particularly in Sydney where it was struggling. The move was met with resistance by GTV 9 programmer Jim McKay because it was so successful in Melbourne as a one hour show. When McKay was later appointed Nine network programming chief he decided to return the show to two one hour episodes a week making way for Sale Of the Century.
Replacing The Sullivans with a quiz show paid off. Sale Of The Century was an immediate success comfortably beating nearest rival Willesee At Seven every night of the week.