July 22, 2024

Dan Brown of Smashing Films outlines the company behind recent factual titles.

Production company name?
Smashing Films.

When was the company founded?
2022.

Where are you based and which states did you film in for 22 / 23 / 24 productions?
We are based in Fremantle but over the last few years we have filmed in every state in Australia.

How many full-time equivalent staff and how many does it expand to during production?
Generally around 6 people but that expands to well over 20 and contracts occasionally to just a couple, flexibility is key!

What is your ownership model and who are key principals?
Smashing is owned by founder and creative director Dan Brown, Line producer Tamsin McArdle and Series Director Anthony Barwell have both been constants.

Describe the genres you specialise in for production?
Over the past 14 years, (including my time as Creative Director and Co-Founder at Joined Up) we’ve spent a lot of time exploring social issues via short run series and single docs.

What have been some of your notable credits and with which broadcasters / streamers?
The Hospital: In the Deep End (SBS) Aerial Australia (Paramount and Smithsonian) Claremont: A Killer Among Us (Channel 10) Keeping Hope (NITV) Will Australia Ever Have A Black Prime Minister? (ABC) What Does Australia Really Think? (SBS) have been some of the recent highlights.

What’s coming up on your slate and how many projects are in active development?

We are going through the commissioning process for a 3 part series with the ABC that tackles one of the most important social issues of our time, we are also developing a follow up to The Hospital for SBS, as well as a range of other projects some of which are a bit of a departure into longer run, lighter factual.

Do you receive unsolicited material, what are you looking for, how should people pitch projects?
I’m always keen to help other people bring great ideas to life, just reach out. The form of the idea is crucial, topics are easy, how to make it interesting and innovative to catch a commissioner’s eye is the tricky bit.

What change would you most like to see when it comes to commissions?
Well more of them is always the goal! I like pitching to a brief, but to be fair I think we are pretty lucky here in Australia at the moment, the industry is doing ok compared to the UK right now.

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