Brian Walsh signs new contract to continue leading Foxtel Originals division

Brian Walsh

Foxtel audience told to prepare for ‘strongest slate ever, of compelling Australian drama and entertainment’

Brian Walsh has been part of the Foxtel management team since the business launched in 1995.

In a new agreement signed with Foxtel, and revealed this week, Brian Walsh will continue his consultancy with the subscription TV platform. He will continue to work on local content strategy, industry relations and will spearhead the Foxtel Originals drama division.

The move signals that Foxtel will continue to commission Australian scripted content. Walsh told Mediaweek: “We are close to making an announcement about another major Australian drama commission.”

In recent years the drama slate has included Wentworth (which recently concluded after nine seasons), Picnic at Hanging Rock, Lambs of God, Mr Inbetween, Upright (currently filming a second season on the Gold Coast), The End, and The Twelve which launches this week.

Just this week Heather Mitchell received a Logie Award for her performance in the 2020 drama Love Me.

Earlier this year Foxtel Group parent company News Corp reported Foxtel subscribers totalled 4.54 million (4.34 million paid) as at March 31, up 20% on the prior year.

Meanwhile, the new entertainment streaming platform Binge reached 1.31 million subscribers (1.21 million paid), up 92% YOY and 26% on the prior quarter.

In the 27 years with Foxtel, Walsh has been a member of the senior management team and has held an executive role for all the years since. He served as the executive director of television for over two decades.

Brian Walsh

Brian Walsh backstage at the Fire Fight concert where Foxtel and Seven united to broadcast the charity concert

Confirming the extension of his contract with Foxtel, Walsh said: “I have enjoyed every moment of my journey with Foxtel and am delighted to sign on for a further term and under new arrangements which will allow me to continue doing what I love most, telling Australian stories, whilst embarking on some new business opportunities more broadly within the entertainment industry.

“I have seen some incredible changes in the business and am excited for what the future holds. I am an entrepreneur at heart and will detail my broader business plans in due course.

“For now, though, the key focus will continue to be Foxtel and delivering what I believe will be our strongest slate ever, of compelling Australian drama and entertainment.”

Foxtel chief commercial and content officer Amanda Laing shared the announcement with staff on Tuesday.

“As we head into FY23, we have a significant number of scripted productions that have either just wrapped and will air later this year, are about to go into production or are in the early stages of development,” said Laing.

“The scripts and stories that Brian and his team are discovering and developing are incredible, and it’s important for us to have the best in the business building an exceptional drama slate for the group across Foxtel and Binge.

“Brian’s special ability and passion for great Australian storytelling was on show through the highly anticipated premiere of our Foxtel Original The Twelve. The Twelve, along with our next Binge Original, Colin from Accounts, had an incredible reception at the screenings in LA a few weeks ago. We have a lot to look forward to as these series premiere on our platforms in the coming months, and even more new and returning scripted productions follow.”

Laing added that as now executive director of drama for the Foxtel Group, Walsh will continue to be supported by Lana Greenhalgh (commissioning editor, drama) and will continue to work closely with Alison Hurbert-Burns (executive director Binge) in commissioning for Binge.

To Top