HEAD OF FACTUAL
Karina has a dynamic track record working in both the independent sector and within the national broadcaster and as such has developed a unique sensibility and understanding of the industry and its challenges.
Her career in television started in 1996 within the ABC Natural History Unit. For five years Karina worked on multi-million dollar blue chip productions, including international co-productions between the ABC and BBC. During this time she was also based in Vietnam and Thailand, developing content between Asia and Australia.
Returning to Australia in 2001, Karina became a freelance producer/director working on her own commissions through Becker Entertainment and Beyond.
In 2006 Karina was employed to oversee production of documentary programming for Southern Star Factual making programs through both the Sydney and Singapore offices. In 2009 the department splintered off and became its own fully-fledged company under Fairfax, working alongside the award winning science and natural history producers, Oxford Scientific Films in London.
Karina became Head of Production for Oxford Scientific Films Australia, leading a team of 12 staff in the Sydney office. Responsible for program development and commissioning, Karina was also the Executive Producer in charge of series for both local and overseas broadcasters. Under Karina’s leadership, the company developed the format Go Back to Where You Came From, as well as several AFI nominated documentary series.
Returning to the ABC after ten years in the independent sector, Karina joined the Documentary Department as Commissioning Editor for Science and Natural History, as well as overseeing internal science TV production as the Head of Catalyst. Karina was the Acting Head of Factual and Documentaries in 2012 and Executive Producer of ABC2’s international doc slot – Sunday Best. Her slate included 50 hours of diverse programming from the Life series, Australia: the Time Traveller’s Guide, Making Couples Happy, Desert War, Shark Girl, Super Predator, Save your Life Tonight, Stone Age Mystery, First Footprints, Kakadu, Hello Birdy, Two Men in China and The Outlaw: Michael Howe, to name a few.
In July 2013, Karina joined Northern Pictures as Head of Production and Development. With the company’s expansion as super indie, with offices in Singapore, Beijing, New Zealand and Washington, her role is now to drive blue chip programming for the international marketplace.
HEAD OF NORTHERN PICTURES KIDS
Specialising in kids entertainment, Catherine has had over 25 years’ experience in the media space in a wide range of roles including channel management, distribution and as an Executive Producer.
Since joining the Northern Pictures team in September 2014, she has had a slate of over 430 episodes commissioned in both Australia and Internationally including preschool series Teddies and Hiccup and Sneeze (both co-productions with Singapore) as well as factual entertainment series for Australian broadcasters Channels Nine and Seven and a large slate of original programming commission by Nat Geo Kids Latin America. In 2018 Catherine had the first Northern Pictures scripted comedy drama series commissioned by the ABC - the series is now in production for delivery in early 2019. Hardball will be distributed by ACTF and also has funding from Screen Australia and Create NSW.
Catherine was previously General Manager, SVP, for Nickelodeon Asia where she oversaw distribution, production, programming and marketing. Before moving to Asia, Catherine was the Managing Director for Nickelodeon Australia where she was responsible for launching Nick Jnr., as well as delivering the #1 Channel and online portal for kids.
GENERAL COUNSEL, BLUE ANT ASIA PACIFIC
Page Henty is General Counsel of Blue Ant Asia-Pacific, providing legal, operational and strategic advice to all of Blue Ant Media’s entities in the Asia-Pacific region.
Page is a corporate and commercial lawyer specialising in entertainment, communications, media and technology law. She has over 30 years experience in Asia, the United States and Australia advising some of the world’s best known media organisations. Transactions that Page has worked on include those establishing the National Geographic Channel in the United States and elsewhere, the Fox Sports Network in the US and the SKY pay TV platforms in Latin America.
Before joining Blue Ant, Page was General Counsel at FTA broadcaster Network Ten and Head of Legal at pay TV distributor AUSTAR in Sydney. Her in-firm experience includes as a partner in the New York office of Hogan & Hartson (now Hogan Lovells) and Special Counsel at leading Australian law firm Allens.
Page is admitted to practice in Australia and New York and is President of the Australian Communications and Media Law Association (CAMLA).
DIRECTOR, BLUE ANT MEDIA
David Haslingden owned and operated the RACAT Group, a global network of television production companies comprising NHNZ, Beach House Pictures, Northern Pictures, Runaway and ZooMoo. The group has operations in the United States, Asia Pacific, Latin America, and Europe producing a broad range of television shows, principally in the non-fiction genre. The Group was acquired by Blue Ant Media in May 2017.
Previously, Mr. Haslingden was President and COO of Fox Networks Group (FNG). As the most senior executive of Fox’s network business, he was responsible for all Fox owned channels in the United States and around the World, including the Fox broadcast network, FX, National Geographic, Nat Geo Wild, Fox Sports, Speed and Fuel in the United States, and all Fox, National Geographic, Star and other Fox owned channels in more than 50 countries. In aggregate FNG’s 250+ channels generated over 60% of News Corporations profits in 2012.
Prior to his appointment as President and COO of FNG at the end of 2010, Mr. Haslingden was CEO of Fox International Channels. Mr. Haslingden also served as CEO of the National Geographic Channels business, a worldwide joint venture between News Corporation and the National Geographic Society.
Mr. Haslingden has sat on a number of industry boards in the United States including the National Cable and Telecommunications Association. He was the Chairman of Network Nine in Australia from 2013 to 2016, and Chairman of US charity WildAid from 2008-2016. He is currently a director of Ardent Leisure Group and Blue Ant Media.
DIRECTOR OF GOODWILL (DOG)
Tido joined the company in 2013. He is an accomplished DOG with over 70 (human) years experience in the private sector. As the company’s main DOG, he is primarily responsible for implementing human resource management strategies that enable the company to recruit and retain a high performing and motivated workforce, with employee health and wellbeing a key priority.
FINANCIAL CONTROLLER, BLUE ANT AUSTRALIA
Jake Richardson is the Financial Controller of Blue Ant Australia, providing oversight of the finance operations and strategy for Northern Pictures and the Australian Geographic businesses based in Australia. A member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand, he has over 10 years’ experience throughout Australia and the United Kingdom.
Before joining Blue Ant, Jake led the finance team for BBC Studios’ Western Europe division. Specialising in distribution of both BBC owned and independent content across Italy, Germany, France, Spain, Portugal, Switzerland, the Benelux and Scandinavia, linear channel operations in the Benelux and Scandinavia and television production in France and Germany. In addition to ensuring good financial operations for Western Europe, Jake has experience on several multi-million pound negotiations with telcos and broadcasters across Western Europe, but specifically in the Netherlands, Denmark and Norway and worked closely with management on several strategic initiatives, such as the launch of a global channel for cruise ships and the launch of a new OTT platform.
SERIES PRODUCER / DIRECTOR
Tosca Looby has been writing, directing and producing award-winning social and natural history documentary for over 25 years across Europe, Asia and Australia.
She began her television career in the UK, completing a masters in International Journalism in London before joining ITV in Wales & Bristol as part of a ‘multi-skilled programme making team’. The six member team were trained in every aspect of television production, then unleashed to create series for the broadcaster including live television from the the rooftop of ITV in Bristol. A true baptism by fire. From the rooftop she could peer longingly at the natural history companies which famously call Bristol home, and eventually snuck out of ITV and into Partridge Films, to pursue animals in place of B Grade British celebrities.
Returning to Australia in 1996, Tosca joined the ABC Natural History Unit (alongside now long-term collaborator Karina Holden) working on both blue-chip and human led international co-productions. She then moved to Perth, where she returned to social documentary with in-house ABC, and Independents Artemis Films and Electric Pictures.
Joining Northern Pictures in late 2015, Tosca has series produced and written the three part series OUTBACK (Channel 9/PBS) and the first blue-chip continent wide series to have been created in Australia by Australians for sixteen years, the MAGICAL LAND OF OZ (ABC, BBC and PBS). In her continuing role at Northern Pictures she is very excited to oversee, as well as further develop and produce outstanding natural history and factual TV in partnership with broadcasters, distributors and funding bodies across the globe.