The 25-year partnership of The Melbourne International Comedy Festival and The Age has ended, with the Herald Sun announcing it will be the festival’s new media partner.

In huge news for the Melbourne media industry, the Herald Sun will launch the 25th Melbourne International Comedy Festival next year with dedicated daily coverage.

“It’s fantastic and we’re very thrilled to have the Comedy Festival,” Herald Weekly Times manager of partnerships and major events Kylie Pritchard tells Marketing magazine.

“We’ve been interested in the festival for some time, we approached them knowing it was the 25th anniversary next year. We’ve put a lot of different ideas to them as part of a partnership, the thrust of it was bringing a broader audience to the festival. The festival were at a point where they realized they had to grow the festival, and they can use Sunday Herald Sun, Heralds Sun and Mx to do that.”

To help broaden the audience, next year the Comedy Festival is going after families more than ever before.

“They have a lot of family-based activities planned next year, they’re wanting to do special things, and we’re a good match for that with our brands. We’re really excited, we think it’s great for our readers to experience the comedy content.

The Herald Sun will be running a similar program to what The Age has done, with a festival program to be inserted in the paper, a daily diary of events, and performance reviews.

But what about that famous Leunig logo? Isn’t that property of Leunig’s employer The Age? Well, apparently not.

“The festival have had a long standing relationship with Leunig, and that’s independent to Leunigs involvement with The Age,” Pritchard tells Marketing magazine. “Leunig will be on board. The Comedy Festival are not going to walk away from a relationship because of a media partnership with The Age. He’s quite synonymous with their design as a marketing tool, so we’ll be running it in the paper.”