The sixth season of Places We Go is currently airing on Channel Ten each Saturday at 4.30PM. Clint Bizzell discusses how he transitioned from professional footballer to host of this highly successful travel show.
Clint Bizzell retired from AFL football at 31 years of age after 163 games with Geelong and Melbourne, but seven years on he is still living the dream.
Along with partner, former Channel 7 news anchor Jennifer Adams, Bizzell is producing and hosting his own TV travel series. The sixth season of Places We Go is currently airing on Channel Ten and continues to tap into the hearts and minds of travellers providing stories that capture the human spirit of people all around the world.
As a footballer Bizzell was known for his reliability and versatility, and it is no different in front of the camera on location in some of the world’s most spectacular and serene locations.
Over the journey they have shot episodes in places such as Cambodia, Vietnam, Germany, Vanuatu, Canada, Fiji and Thailand.
Antarctica is the pinnacle of their travels for its uniqueness and “spectacular frames” and Bizzell describes it as “incredibly humbling”. However, there have been many unforgettable landscapes and friendships forged closer to home.
“Sometimes I think that we get to travel to these incredible destinations around the world but sometimes the best parts are really in your own backyard,” he says.
It’s just about discovering them and meeting the locals that are so passionate about their local areas, which is so infectious and makes you feel a part of that particular area.”
Clint Bizzell’s journey into life after football began in his second last year in the AFL, when he accompanied Adams filming the first season of Places We Go on location in East Asia and Peru.
Back then it was a humble operation. Adams, sick of seeing plastic travel shows on her TV screen, had recently left the news desk to combine her passion for telling inspirational stories and travel.
She hoped to produce a series that resonated with the hardcore travellers.
“I think she was sick and tired of travel show that were almost written back at the desk in Melbourne with pieces to camera for presenters to roll out.”
The idea came about during the production of a documentary for the Seven Network called Everest: Unfinished Business – about three policemen climbing Mt Everest in honor of a mate. Adams and a colleague, Daniel McPherson, quit their jobs soon after and set about creating the first series of Places We Go.
Adams was the writer, the producer, the director and talent and Daniel McPherson was the cameraman, director and editor. The editing was done in McPherson’s spare bedroom and the voice-overs recorded in a cupboard Adams had to squeeze herself into. But it was an efficient operation; the first season gathered an audience of more than 300 million.
“Together they made a great team, making these great off the shoulder, run-and-gun style docos, that really got to the heart and soul of travel,” he says.
When Bizzell retired at the end of 2007 after 12 years in the AFL, the evolution from key defender to travel show host made sense.
“I had a partner already working in the industry and had a project I loved and was passionate about.”
“I was inspired by what she was doing and the places we would go to and the people we would meet. They are everlasting memories.
“It has started from humble beginnings but it has really started to move into a great career path and one that I am very fortunate enough to be placed in.”
While Adams’ dream began as a 13-episode series, it has developed into somewhat of a travelling community. Through the Places We Go website people can share their photos, experiences and ideas.
The Places We Go team has swelled too, with new hosts, staff and partners coming on board with each season, and one of those is former around the world captain Jesse Martin.
With their daughter Charlie Grace approaching school age, Bizzell acknowledges they can’t stay in front of the camera forever. But Places We Go is just a part of the broader picture for Bizzell and Adams.
Through Eve Media, founded by Adams in 2004, they produce a variety of different media content across various mediums with the goal to inspire by story. As well as Places We Go they have produced various broadcast quality documentaries, television commercials and content for News Limited travel publication – Escape.
“It’s been an exciting ride…it has started from humble beginnings but it has really started to move into a great career path and one that I am very fortunate enough to be placed in.”
The sixth series of Places We Go is currently airing on Channel Ten each Saturday at 4.30PM. Watch the first episode of the series below.