Global entertainment giant to deliver Hector Crawford Memorial Lecture


Today Screen Producers Australia (SPA) took great pride in announcing that Cathy Payne, CEO of global entertainment superpower distributor Banijay Rights, will deliver the Hector Crawford Memorial lecture in person at SCREEN FOREVER 36 in March 2022.  

Raised on the New South Wales’ Central Coast, Cathy began what has become an illustrious career through a chance meeting with an executive from Hanna-Barbera Australia. Working her way through the ranks, Cathy eventually spent ten years as CEO of Southern Star International.  In that role, Cathy was responsible for a number of key deals including the negotiation of the life of series  move for Australian hit series Home and Away from the UK’s ITV to Channel 5.

In 2009 Southern Star was acquired by Endemol. Here Cathy ran its worldwide distribution wing from London for over a decade, building some of the most iconic brands we know today.

In 2020 Cathy moved to her current role as CEO of, Banijay Rights (the global distribution arm of the Banijay) upon its acquisition of Endemol Shine Group. Here Cathy’s vision and expertise steers all distribution activity for Banijay’s evolving catalogue of multi-genre brands, ranging from juggernaut format shows such as Big Brother, MasterChef and Survivor to critically acclaimed scripted series Black Mirror and Peaky Blinders.  Cathy oversees more than 120,000 hours of programming across all genres.

Being such an important leader in our industry and having overseen some of the most significant changes across the domestic and international television landscapes, in 2021 Cathy was named one of the twenty most powerful women in Global entertainment by The Hollywood Reporter. Cathy believes it is her corporate responsibility that Banijay has a permanent focus on improving diversity and equality in the entertainment industry, along with creating opportunities for underrepresented voices to find their way into the industry.

“It’s an honour and a privilege to deliver the Hector Crawford Memorial lecture at Screen Forever at such a critical time for Australia’s screen industry.  I look forward to sharing my thoughts about production and distribution changes, challenges and opportunities for our incredible Australian stories,” 

– said Banijay Rights CEO, Cathy Payne

“We can’t wait to hear from Cathy at Screen Forever and applaud her contribution to the global and Australian industry over so many years. Having such an influential and accomplished Australian as our memorial lecturer for 2022 will provide invaluable insight and inspiration for our delegates,”

– said SPA CEO, Matthew Deaner

The Hector Crawford Memorial Lecture has been a keynote feature of the annual SCREEN FOREVER conference since 1992. The speech honours its namesake’s legacy and emphasises the importance of independent production in Australia’s cultural life.  This year the Hector Crawford Memorial Lecture will take place on the first of an extended five-day SCREEN FOREVER in 2022 (28-30 March, Conference, and Domestic Market on the Gold Coast. 31 March-1 April, Online Global Market) with registrations now open at

Link to SCREEN FOREVER 36 ticketing information HERE.





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