Laura Waters

Laura Waters founded Princess Pictures in 2003 driven by a vision to support creative ideas, pushing audiences to see the world in new ways.

Born in the US, she studied at Boston University and produced current affairs and documentary television in London and LA. She’s produced all five of Chris Lilley’s ABC/HBO/BBC comedy series, We Can Be HeroesSummer Heights HighAngry BoysJa’mie: Private School Girl and Jonah From Tonga, as well as Chris’s most recent series, Lunatics for Netflix.

Laura has overseen the production of a range of groundbreaking series with recent productions including: ABC ME’s ‘vlogumentary’ series My Year 7 Life and My Year 12 Life; the award-winning documentary, The Graceland Happiness Project; Foxtel’s sketch comedy show Open Slather; landmark series from John Clarke, Sporting Nation and The Sounds of Aus; John Safran’s look at cross-cultural love, Race Relations and his documentary on the 2016 Australian vote The Goddam Election!; Peter Helliar’s acclaimed comedy anthology It’s a Date and feature film I Love You TooAustralia’s first Aboriginal sitcom, 8MMM; and Outlanda comedy series about gay science fiction fans. Currently she is delivering a unique comedy/documentary/musical series to the ABC written by Andrew Hansen and Chris Taylor from The Chaser and developing as many mind-boggling things as she can handle.

Recently Princess partnered with the acclaimed animation company Bento Box to not only produce original Australian adult animation, but also establish a studio based in Melbourne. Currently Princess Bento is in production on several animated series, including Yolo and Smiling Friends for Adult Swim, and Koala Man for Hulu.

Laura has won two TV Logie awards, one AFI award, the NYC Webfest and been nominated for dozens of international television awards for various Princess Pictures productions.

Wokashama Films

Emma Fitzsimons

Emma Fitzsimons has been working in the film and television industry for 17 years as an executive producer and lawyer. She is a partner at Princess Pictures and works across its entire slate as Managing Director.

She has executive produced the landmark unscripted series My Year 12 Life and My Year 7 Life as well as a number of scripted projects including Yolo Crystal Fantasy, The Divorce, Superwog S1 & S2, How to Stay Married S1, S2 & S3, The Slot and the Emmy Award nominated Wrong Kind of Black. Having previously worked for UK broadcaster Channel 4, global production company ITV/Granada and children’s TV production and distribution specialists, the ACTF, Emma is experienced in all aspects of content development and financing.

Mike Cowap

Mike worked at Screen Australia since it was founded in 2008 and before that with predecessor agency the Australian Film Commission since 2005. In his role as Investment Manager at the Federal Government’s key screen agency, Mike managed many award-winning projects including online content, TV series, feature films, apps, interactive drama & documentary, and video games, and conceived and ran many initiatives, conferences, and training opportunities.

Mike had special responsibility for innovative digital production, exploring new platforms, finance, and revenue models. Amongst several special programs, Mike initiated and managed SKIP AHEAD with Google/YouTube to support content creators to grow online subscribers, and FRESH BLOOD with ABC TV/iview to find the next wave of comedy filmmaking talent. Prior to joining the agency, Mike held positions with the UK Film Council and the South Australian Film Corporation, and worked with production companies Picture Palace North (UK) and Monkeystack.

Mike’s commitment to unique and remarkable talent, coupled with his creative judgement and enviable knowledge of current trends in international production make him an invaluable asset at Princess Pictures.

Sarah Lang

Before joining Princess Pictures, Sarah worked for 5 years in the script and production departments of series such as Wolf Creek, Fat Tony & Co, Rosehaven and The Weekly with Charlie Pickering, and wrote additional comedy material for the first season of Get Krack!n.

Sarah collaborated with Princess Pictures as a freelancer on 8MMM: Aboriginal Radio and The Divorce, and joined the team full time in 2017 via Film Victoria’s Key Talent Company Placement scheme. Sarah is Head of Development across the company’s entire scripted slate, including comedy, drama, feature film and adult animation. She served as script editor on the first two seasons of How To Stay Married, a Princess Pictures and Peter Helliar comedy series for Network Ten, and was script producer on the third season, and wrote three episodes of the show.

Michelle Brown

After completing Bachelors in Media and Entertainment Business Management, Michelle joined Princess Pictures in 2014 working on Foxtel’s sketch comedy show Open Slather. From there she went on to Talent and Story Produce on ABC ME’s ‘vlogumentary’ series My Year 7 Life and My Year 12 Life, during which, Michelle received the “Media Award” for My Year 12 Life at the 2017 WayAhead Mental Health Matters Awards.

Now eight years into her journey with Princess Pictures, Michelle works across the entire slate as the Production Operations Manager on comedy, drama, feature film and adult animation. Most recently including Channel 10’s series How To Stay Married, staring Peter Helliar, ABC Comedy’s Superwog and Adult Swim’s animations YOLO: Crystal Fantasy and Smiling Friends.

Simone Ball

Simone has worked in the entertainment industry for many years, honing her legal skills at a national law firm and then at December Media, where she worked across their entire slate of television series, documentary and giant screen films. She is also an actress and a writer so has a great appreciation for story, as well as an understanding of the legal intricacies involved in developing, financing and distributing quality content.

Pennie Brown

Pennie is a Producer of comedy How to Stay Married (S2, S3), KINNE and has worked as an Associate Producer on some of Australia’s leading drams Wentworth, Winners & Losers, City Homicide as well as producing animated content for Sesame Street.

Before joining Princess Pictures, Pennie was employed as a Scripted Development Producer working across an extensive drama slate including Secret Bridesmaids Business. From 2015-2017 Pennie consulted to Disney/ABC Network’s International Scripted Department scouting for Australian formats and talent to be produced in the US market.

Pennie brings a wealth of development and producing experience across a diverse Australian television landscape and will continue to hone her producing skills at Princess Pictures.

JOHN KASSAB

John’s career in film launched in 2009 as the sound designer of Shaun Tan’s Oscar winning animation The Lost Thing and Ariel Kleiman’s groundbreaking short film Deeper Than Yesterday.

Shortly after, John received a Winston Churchill Fellowship and eventually relocated overseas where he has produced films in Los Angeles, New York, Baltimore, Massachettes, Atlanta and London.

John’s productions include the acclaimed documentary film 12 O’Clock Boys which premiere at SXSW, the Spanish language Debris which premiered at Telluride, Nobody’s Darling which premiered at Sidewalk Film Festival and the British sci-fi They Wait for Us which premiered at Fantasia Film Festival. John also produced and directed Renaissance Woman, a web series written and performed by Hannah Gadsby. Collectively, his productions have received over 40 international festival and guild awards and nominations.

Since returning to Australia, John served a term as president of diversity film education and outreach organisation Cinespace, Inc before joining Princess. He is now developing a number of scripted and factual projects as a producer, writer and director.

Ali Bird

Ali Bird is a commercial lawyer specialising in media and entertainment law. Her expertise includes commercial contracts, dispute resolution, consumer law, procurement and corporate governance, with a particular interest in helping creatives maximise the value of their intellectual property.

Ali’s extensive industry experience includes seven years as Film Victoria’s in-house legal counsel, two years with ITV London as in-house legal counsel and recently as in-house legal counsel at Guesswork Pictures and Token. Ali also runs her own sole practice law firm, Ali Bird Legal. She has overseen complex production and financing arrangements, licensing agreements and investment deals. 

Throughout, Ali has maintained strong ties to the creative community. She served as a board member for City of Melbourne’s Music Strategy Advisory Committee for four years and Board Secretary of Melbourne’s Schoolhouse Studios for three years. Ali is also the co-founder of Real Life, a collective that encourages real-life connections to mentor, support and learn.

CHLOE WONG

Chloe is a pharmacist-turned-writer who joins the Princess team through a Film Victoria Key Talent Placement.

She has worked as a notetaker for companies such as Matchbox/NBCU and Fremantle Australia across a slate of comedy, children’s adventure, and contemporary drama. In 2019, she was selected to participate in AFTRS Talent Camp Victoria with her comedy webseries project. Most recently, she was the notetaker and script coordinator for How to Stay Married Season 3.