Alan Erson, most recently head of documentaries for the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC), is joining Sydney-based prodco Essential Media & Entertainment as general manager for Australia and head of factual.
Erson will oversee factual development and production for all Australian broadcasters. Essential CEO Chris Hilton, who was previously the company’s head of factual in Australia, will continue to lead Essential while executive producing various factual projects and building up the prodco’s new Toronto and Los Angeles offices.
Erson had been head of documentaries for ABC for the past two years and was its commissioning editor for science, history and natural history. The move to Essential marks a return to independent production for him, as he’d previously produced programming for such networks as Discovery, National Geographic and the BBC as an indie.
ABC commissioning editor Karina Holden will take over the role on an interim basis as acting head after Erson’s June 20 departure, with the broadcaster planning to advertise for the position.
“Alan brings a wealth of experience and proven success in delivering both television and multi-media content,” said Holden. “He will be a great asset in this newly created role at Essential.”
“I’m looking forward to being part of Essential’s innovative team – and to taking up the challenges of independent production in this time of great change,” added Erson.
Recent projects from Essential include the natural history series Australia: The Time Traveller’s Guide and Seduction in the City: The Birth of Shopping. The prodco made its first appearance in realscreen‘s Global 100 this past March.