Chris Fitchett to leave Screen Australia

[Press Release by The Lantern Group]

Screen Australia’s Executive Director, Production Support & Investment, Chris Fitchett, will leave the agency on 5 December 2008 to pursue his own projects.

“Chris had initially agreed to stay with us until early next year when the new structure and programs were well bedded down. However, a professional opportunity has arisen which needs his attention earlier than anticipated,” said Interim CEO Lyn Maddock.

An award-winning writer, director and producer, Chris joined the Australian Film Commission (AFC) in October 2005 as Director of Film Development and became Acting Chief Executive in February 2006. He led the AFC during a period of significant change, culminating in this year’s merger with the FFC and Film Australia to form Screen Australia. After 1 July, he remained to head the new agency’s development and production investment division through its early days as Executive Director.

“I am indebted to Chris for the dedication, professionalism and insight he has shown throughout the process of establishing Screen Australia,” said Lyn Maddock. “He has played a major role in keeping the current programs running smoothly as well as providing invaluable input into the agency’s future directions.”

Over the next few weeks, Chris will work with incoming CEO Dr Ruth Harley on the introduction of the agency’s new programs in early December, but will not be involved in the assessment of projects for presentation to the next Screen Australia Board meeting on 16 December.

Dr Harley takes up her position as CEO on 17 November, and will shortly be settling the ongoing structure and staffing required to meet the needs of the new programs.