NZFC names Aussie as new CEO

[press release from NZFC]

The NZFC Board is pleased to announce the appointment of Graeme Mason as the new CEO of the New Zealand Film Commission with effect from early April 2009.

“Graeme has an extensive international career in the film industry and the wider multi-media environment. He has a strong passion for film and has wide experience in managing the creative and commercial interface on projects” said NZFC Board Chair, David Cullwick.

“We are delighted to have attracted someone with his international commercial knowledge, skills and networks. Graeme brings a fresh but informed perspective on our local industry. He has a very high regard for New Zealand film making, and is enthusiastic about leading the NZFC to work closely with industry to take us further onto world stages”.

A native Australian, Graeme’s early career involved seven years with PolyGram Filmed Entertainment, culminating as Senior Vice President for over three years.

In this role he acquired or oversaw the production of films to augment in-house projects including The Usual Suspects, Trainspotting, Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, Spice World – The Movie, and When We Were Kings.

At PolyGram, Graeme had active involvement with the international licensing and distribution of films such as Priscilla Queen of the Desert, Nell, Dead Man Walking, and Four Weddings and a Funeral .

After PolyGram, Graeme was President of Acquisitions at Universal Pictures for three years, based in London and Los Angeles.

In 2003, Graeme joined Channel 4 Corporation. Channel 4 is one of the UK’s leading media entities with multiple TV Channels, radio, web and publishing functions. Channel 4 operates under government ownership with a full public service remit but is completely funded by commercial means.

Initially Graeme was Head of Media projects where he provided a dedicated link between the creative and commercial arms both internally and externally.

He was involved in establishing a new Film Division, re-launching the Channel 4 Film Library and supervising the completion of production, sales and distribution of Film 4 titles including The Motor Cycle Diaries and Touching the Void. Later he was Managing Director of Rights for Channel 4.

Most recently Graeme has been Executive Producer of London-based Scarlet Pictures, assisting with development on a slate of projects for this independent film production entity.