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First Option, Production Company, Launched by Agent Mark Morrissey

CHICAGO, UNITED STATES - NOVEMBER 01:
Alfred Eisenstaedt / The LIFE Picture Collection via Getty Images

Veteran Australian talent agent Mark Morrissey is capitalizing on the global demand for content and is launching production company First Option Pictures.

TV drama series, “Radicals” is the first project to emerge from a slate intended to span film, television internet, social media and podcasts.

“Radicals” is an anthology series with the pilot script by Los Angeles-based screenwriter and producer Jonathan Shapiro (“Goliath,” “Black List”). The story follows Harry Bridges, a little-known yet historic figure who became the champion of the U.S. labor movement in San Francisco in the 1930s and for decades thereafter was the target of anti-unionist politics, prosecution and deportation for his efforts.

“Bridges was born in Melbourne, Australia and never lost his accent,” Morrissey notes. “Discovering and bringing to life these kinds of stories – at once intimate and global – is at the heart of First Option Pictures.”

The company is also developing an Audibles Original 10-part drama series audiobook, a feature film and two other international TV series.

Morrissey was the founder and MD of Morrissey Management, one of Australia’s leading
talent management companies. Its clients have included Chris Hemsworth, Liam Hemsworth, Shalom Brune-Franklin, Jai Courtney, Rebecca Breeds, Luke Bracey and Yerin Ha.

Morrissey also has executive producer credits on “Molly” for Australia’s Channel 7; award-winning short film “The Last Time I Saw Richard”; feature “Boys in The Trees”; Australian Broadcasting Corporation web series “Sarah’s Channel” and Stan original TV series “The Gloaming.

Demand for video content is currently booming as multinational, regional and thematic streaming platforms compete with each other and prioritize premium original shows. Although the coronavirus pandemic has had a widely disruptive effect, new studios are being planned or built around the world to meet the rising demand. This also puts content developers and rights owners in a strong negotiating position and has the effect of blurring previously important national borders.