After five years as SBS’s head of scripted, Sue Masters is set to depart the broadcaster to pursue independent drama development.
Having led the drama commissioning team, Masters leaves a legacy that includes the International Emmy Award-winning Safe Harbour, SBS’s most successful drama ever, The Hunting, Robbie Hood, Sunshine, The Principal, The Family Law, Deep Water, Dead Lucky, On The Ropes, and the upcoming Hungry Ghosts.
Until recruitment for the position commences in 2020, Amanda Duthie has joined SBS as acting head of drama. Most recently Duthie was the head of production and development and studios at the South Australian Film Corporation, and prior to that was the creative director/CEO of the Adelaide Film Festival and head of arts & entertainment at ABC.
Masters will continue to work across some SBS initiatives, including The R.I.D.E Feature Film Fund, a feature film project and partnership with Screen Queensland, and Digital Originals, a short form content initiative with Screen Australia; both aimed at providing tangible opportunities for creatives from backgrounds underrepresented in the Australian screen sector.
Director of TV and online content Marshall Heald said: “Sue has had a lasting impact on SBS, and I’d like to thank her significant contribution to our network, but also to all of our screens. Sue’s genuine love for and understanding of powerful Australian stories, her passion and advocacy for diversity, and unparalleled talent and tenacity are second to none. She has been instrumental in building on SBS’s strong reputation for local drama, with an enviable slate of highly distinctive and award-winning shows, including Safe Harbour, The Family Law, Robbie Hood and The Hunting. We wish Sue all the best for the future and look forward to our paths crossing through her work with the independent production sector, as well as consulting for SBS.”
Masters said: “I fell in love with the charter soon after joining SBS, it’s the heart and soul of everything we do. I’m thrilled with what we’ve achieved over the past five years and the success we’ve had in introducing new faces and voices to Australian screens. It’s been a privilege to work here and I will remain a lifelong advocate of the beautiful work they do.”
Duthie said: “I am thrilled to be working on the dynamic fiction slate at SBS, led by Marshall Heald and nurtured by the Queen of scripted drama, the legendary Sue Masters. I’m looking forward to welcoming a new wave of projects in development and working on the unique and highly acclaimed SBS production slate.”