Geoff Brown, the long-time executive director of the Screen Producers Association of Australia, died this week, age 65.
He stepped down from SPAA in 2012 after 11 years as its executive director and a previous term as its commercial manager. He also served on the board of AFI / AACTA.
His previous career in the industry was at the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, where he served as a producer.
Brown is credited with having been instrumental in the setting up of Screen Australia and for continued lobbying in favour of the ‘Offset’ or production spend deduction system that has helped the Australian film and TV industries outgrow their domestic roots.
Tributes to him this week came from his successor at Screen Producers Australia, Matthew Deaner; producer, Anthony Ginnane; and close friend, Des Power, chairman of the Asia Pacific Screen Awards. Brown helped connect APSA to the FIAPF European producers’ organization.
Brown would have enjoyed the eulogies from the industry he loved. After the deaths of his wife and a son in 2010 and 2011, he told the Sydney Morning Herald: ”At the time and ever since, I’ve thought how much better to work in the film industry than in a bank. The whole industry came to my help, cosseted me and helped me through. I’m not sure that happens to someone who works in a bank.”