SBS Manager Named Commissioner of the Year

Screen Producers Australia have announced Julie Eckersley, Head of Scripted at SBS, as their Commissioner of the Year award ahead of the annual SPA Awards.

In her two years at SBS, she has commissioned upcoming dramas Safe home while the men are gone, erotic stories, And fast road.

“My role at SBS is to be a gate opener, not a gate keeper. I’m here to support our creative industry and be a channel to bring our incredible Aussie stories to the big screen and to support our creatives in making world-class dramas,” said Julie.

“Also, I have an incredibly talented team at my side: Donna Chang, Loani Arman, Catherine Kelleher and Penny Win. We work very closely together in everything we do.

“It is the greatest honor of my career to serve our Australian television industry in my role as Head of Scripted at SBS. To be recognized in this way by my peers is very humbling. Working with an incredible team, I have never been more excited about the amazing talent and fresh stories we have in Australia than I have been since taking on this role,” she added.

The Commissioner of the Year Award celebrates and recognizes the recent achievements of an Australian Commissioner who has demonstrated excellence in creativity, leadership and diverse and inclusive thinking while working closely and successfully with the independent manufacturing sector.

“This is a very important award, not only in recognition of Julie and her skills and achievements, but also to reaffirm the need and value of Simpatico in our industry between clients and producers. When these relationships work well, our shared screen work and audience are the clear beneficiaries,” said SPA CEO Matthew Deaner.

The SPA Awards will take place on Friday 5th May 2023 at The Star Gold Coast as part of the Screen Forever conference.

Julie oversees the development and production of SBS original content. Since joining the team in 2021, she’s brought an undeniably fresh perspective to the channel’s commissioned drama roster and a deeper commitment to connecting with new and emerging talent.

Under Julie’s leadership, SBS has expanded its script offerings, including the introduction of half-hour drama series, has seen more international opportunities for shows, and launched initiatives aimed at making the commissioned team increasingly accessible to creatives in the industry.

In her two years at SBS to date, she has commissioned an impressive four Australian dramas – Safe Home, While the Men Are Away, Erotic Stories and Swift Street – three of which premiere this year, making 2023 a record year for the channel in the Premieres of originally commissioned screenplay programs, SBS announced at their Upfront showcase last year.

In addition to prime time, SBS Scripted also commissions the Digital Originals series, a joint venture with Screen Australia and NITV that supports underrepresented talent in the industry. This groundbreaking initiative continues to give a voice to award-winning stories from across Australia, providing a platform for emerging creators, showcasing their creativity and nurturing their careers as Australia’s next generation of screen practitioners. The next Digital Originals series, Appetite, will have its world premiere in competition at the Canneseries later this month before launching April 22 on SBS VICELAND and SBS On Demand.

Having worked in production and development throughout her career, Julie is passionate about supporting creatives and has prioritized time and investment in the development phase of projects to ensure scripts and ideas have time to be fully developed before going into the go into production. She has also earned a reputation in the industry for supporting opportunities and avenues for new talent, including opening SBS Scripted to accepting offers directly from writers. She also developed SBS’s free and publicly available Pitch Deck guide, which aims to empower new creatives and give them the tools to successfully pitch their projects to industry leaders like Julie. The popular SBS Scripted TV Lunch is another initiative that Julie brought to fruition in 2022, providing a monthly forum for members of the SBS Scripted Commissioning Team to connect directly with practitioners, provide information, advice and any questions about the work and careers to answer the industry.

Dustin Huang

Dustin Huang is a 24ssports U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Dustin Huang joined 24ssports in 2021 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing:

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