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MICHAEL CARRINGTON confirms departure from ABC Director of Entertainment role

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The ABC Director Entertainment & Specialist Michael Carrington has announced he will leave the corporation in July to return to the production sector.

Michael joined the ABC in 2016 with an international reputation in the industry as a creative and trusted leader with a clear understanding of audience needs.

Bluey, Old Peoples Home for 4 Year Olds, Fisk and The Newsreader are just some of the successful programs Michael has commissioned.

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His leadership in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic saw the launch of the $5 million Fresh Start Fund, which supported more than 200 Australian productions and new content ideas, an initiative that provided vital support to the industry when it needed it most.

Under Michael, ABC iview grew stronger as an important service for Australians everywhere who demanded entertaining, informative and educational programs.

Michael was the key driving force behind the 2021 release of the ABC Diversity and Inclusion Commissioning Guidelines, ensuring more diverse faces, voices, cultures and stories are reflected and represented on screen.

ABC programs have claimed an impressive number of national and international awards in recent years, including AACTA Awards, Emmys, Logies, New York Festivals TV and Film Awards, and Walkley Awards.

ABC Managing Director David Anderson congratulated Michael on his achievements during his time at the ABC and the many contributions he has made.

“Michael is a thoughtful, inclusive and creative leader, and the impact of his decisions can be seen in the vibrant range of programs the ABC has delivered to audiences under his guidance.

“Many of those decisions were made in response to the COVID pandemic and Michael showed great leadership during this time.

“Michael is highly regarded and I know everyone at the ABC wishes him well with the next step in his already dynamic career.”

Confirming his departure, Michael Carrington said:

“We have built a strong foundation to connect with and build new audiences, including strengthening our creative teams, aligning our linear and digital platforms, evolving ABC iview, improving our operations, and most importantly launching a long list of new and compelling Australian content.”

Michael added:

“In 2020, the ABC announced a five-year-plan to transform from a traditional broadcaster to the nation’s most trusted and valued digital content provider across all platforms.

That plan is on track – I am proud of the contribution the whole team in E&S has made and I thank them for their dedication.

“I also owe a huge thank you to the world-class independent producers, writers, and performers I’ve had the privilege to work with over the years. The ABC will always be an inspiration to me, and I am grateful to have had this experience.”

During his tenure, Michael was responsible for reorganising Entertainment and Specialist into a leaner audience-focussed content supplier and curator.

The existing leadership team, which will report to Jennifer Collins as Acting Director Entertainment and Specialist during the transition period, will continue to drive E&S content development, commissioning, and distribution forward.

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