ABC, Screen Australia, ITV Studios, and Screen Canberra are delighted to announce that filming has begun in Canberra on Austin, a charming new eight-part narrative comedy series for the ABC. Austin will air on ABC TV and ABC iview in 2024.
Produced by the multi award-winning team at Northern Pictures, Austin stars two of the UK’s most-loved performers, Ben Miller (Bridgerton, Death in Paradise) and Sally Phillips (Veep, Bridget Jones’s Diary), along with favourite Australian actors Gia Carides (My Big Fat Greek Wedding, Big Little Lies) and Roy Billing (Jack Irish, Underbelly). Making his acting debut is Michael Theo, the breakout star of the ABC’s international hit series Love on the Spectrum.
When much-loved children’s author Julian Hartswood (Ben Miller) inadvertently causes a social media storm, his career and that of his illustrator wife Ingrid (Sally Phillips) appears to be over. That is until Austin (Michael Theo), the neurodivergent son that Julian never knew existed, turns up out of the blue. Could embracing this modern nuclear family be Julian’s route back from cancellation? Will Ingrid forgive him for being such a pompous shit? One thing is for certain: if Julian thinks Austin is going to be a push over, he’s in for a rude awakening.
ABC Head of Scripted Rachel Okine says “Everyone loved Michael Theo when he opened his heart to us in Love on the Spectrum, and they’re going to love him all over again when he shows off his comic chops alongside comedy legends Ben Miller and Sally Phillips in this humorous and heartwarming international series.”
Screen Australia Head of Content, Grainne Brunsdon says, “At its heart, Austin is a show about neurodiversity and acceptance. This funny and original comedy series, starring the incredibly talented and much-loved Michael Theo, alongside comedy legends Ben Miller and Sally Phillips will bring laughter, joy and a flurry of heart-warming moments to our screens. Austin is a testament to the power of storytelling in promoting inclusivity, and we’re absolutely delighted to be part of this series.”
Julie Meldal-Johnsen, EVP Global Content, ITV Studios says “We cannot wait for our international partners to dive into the beautiful, heartfelt, hilarious and uplifting world of Austin. Offering whip-smart dialogue and a story that is as emotive as it is funny, we feel this UK/Australian dramatic-comedy is truly international and ITV Studios is proud to support it.”
Holly Trueman, CEO of Screen Canberra says, “Screen Canberra is excited to support Austin through the Screen Attraction Fund and Screen Investment Fund. Filming this international comedy series in Canberra highlights our diverse filming locations and talented industry professionals. Austin is another high-calibre project showcasing our city’s creative potential.”
A Northern Pictures production for the ABC. Major production investment from the ABC in association with Screen Australia, Screen Canberra and ITV Studios which also handles international distribution. Post, digital and visual effects support by Screen NSW.
Writers / creators: Darren Ashton, Ben Miller, Lloyd Woolf, Joe Tucker, Adam Zwar and Kala Ellis. Producer: Joe Weatherstone. Executive Producers: Catherine Nebauer, Darren Ashton, Ben Miller, Sally Phillips, Lloyd Woolf, Joe Tucker, and Peter Anderson. ABC Executive Producers: Todd Abbott and Rebecca Anderson. ABC Head of Scripted: Rachel Okine.