See-Saw Films appoints Head of Film & Television

Liz Watts to oversee development & production of all Film and TV projects out of See-Saw’s Australian office.

Liz Watts has been appointed as Head of Film and Television for See-Saw Films Australia (Firebite, The New Legends of Monkey, The End, Top of the Lake).

She will oversee the development and production of all film and television projects out of See-Saw’s Australian office, including for its joint venture Picking Scabs with writer Sam Strauss. She was at Porchlight Films with Vincent Sheehan and Anita Sheehan, which she co-founded in 1997.

Watts (Stateless, Fires, Animal Kingdom) joins See-Saw from her own company Spirit Pictures, bringing with her a select group of projects and will continue to EP key shows developed under Spirit’s first look with Matchbox Pictures. She will report to joint Managing Directors Emile Sherman and Iain Canning, as well as See-Saw’s UK based Creative Director Helen Gregory.

Watts said: “I’ve long admired the brilliance, creative drive and tenacity of See-Saw, and the excellent taste of its Managing Directors Emile and Iain. Stacked with so many talented people with so many skillsets, it’s a truly global production house. I’m hugely excited about joining a company that isn’t resting on its laurels but is firmly looking to the future of original, enthralling television and feature storytelling. I can’t wait to dive in!”

Emile Sherman and Iain Canning said: “We’re absolutely delighted to welcome Liz Watts into the See-Saw family. Liz brings an extraordinary wealth of experience and an unwavering eye for quality as a film and television Producer and Executive Producer, with so many deep creative relationships with the most exciting Australian voices. The opportunity for Australian content is stronger than it’s ever been, both locally and internationally, and we’re excited to grow our Australian business with Liz at the helm.”

She begins on December 14.

Watts joins Saw-Saw at an exciting time for the Academy Award, Emmy and BAFTA-winning production house, having their busiest year yet across television and film. Its current release slate includes: ‘The Power Of The Dog’, written and directed by Jane Campion; ‘The North Water’, written and directed by Andrew Haigh; and ‘Operation Mincemeat’ written by Michelle Ashford and directed by John Madden. It is in production this year on five TV shows: ‘State of the Union: Season Two’ for SundanceTV, written by Nick Hornby and directed by Stephen Frears; ‘Heartstopper’ for Netflix, created and written by Alice Oseman and directed by Euros Lyn; ‘The Essex Serpent’ for Apple TV+, written by Anna Symon and directed by Clio Barnard; ‘Slow Horses’ for Apple TV+, written by Will Smith and directed by James Hawes; and ‘Firebite’ for AMC+, written and directed by Warwick Thornton and Brendan Fletcher. See-Saw’s upcoming film slate includes: Florian Zeller’s ‘The Son’, written by Florian Zeller and Sir Christopher Hampton; Garth Davis’ ‘Foe’, written by Davis and Iain Reid; and Thomas M Wright’s ‘The Stranger’.

Watts has previously collaborated with See-Saw on a number of projects, including ‘Mary Magdalene’ (2018) directed by Garth Davis, starring Rooney Mara, Joaquin Phoenix, Chiwetel Ejiofor and Tahar Rahim, for Focus Features. She has produced a number of other acclaimed feature films, including Justin Kurzel’s ‘True History of the Kelly Gang’, based on Peter Carey’s book of the same name, starring George MacKay, Essie Davis, Nicholas Hoult, Charlie Hunnam and Russell Crowe, and David Michôd’s ‘The King’, starring Timothée Chalamet, Edgerton and Sean Harris, and Michôd’s ‘Animal Kingdom’ and ‘The Rover’. Watts’ television credits include the series ‘Stateless’ (2020) which she Executive Produced for Matchbox Pictures for ABC TV/Netflix, starring Cate Blanchett, Yvonne Strahovski, and Dominic West, ‘Fires’ for Tony Ayres Productions and ‘Preppers’ and ‘Operation Buffalo’ which she Executive Produced for ABC TV. Watts set up Spirit Pictures in August 2020, having previously co-run production company Porchlight Films with Vincent Sheehan and Anita Sheehan, which she co-founded in 1997.

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