SBS commissions new drama series Better Man

26 July, 2012 by Staff Reporter

SBS has commissioned mini-series Better Man, the public broadcaster's first drama series in three years.

The four-part series is based on the true story of 25-year old Vietnamese-Australian Van Nguyen, who was convicted of drug trafficking in Singapore and executed for his crime in 2005.


SBS managing director Michael Ebeid said Better Man is an example of the sort of compelling, inspiring and thought provoking content that SBS can create with sustainable funding.

"Whilst our unprecedented federal budget funding boost is largely addressing the challenges we’ve faced in a changing media landscape, it has also enabled us to get back into the business of drama programming which our audiences know when we do it, we do it well.”

Better Man is written and directed by Khoa Do, who received the Young Australian of the Year Award in 2005. Do, whose family originally settled in Sydney as Vietnamese refugees, has made several feature films beginning with Delivery Day in 2001. His last two films were Falling for Sahara (about three African refugee boys who end up in competition for a girl) and Mother Fish (about four refugees fleeing Vietnam in 1980).

Better Man is the first commission for SBS’s director of TV and online content Tony Iffland. The series is being produced by FremantleMedia Australia in association with Bravado Productions for SBS.

FMA creative director and executive producer, Jason Stephens, said: “Khoa Do’s involvement brings a resonance to Better Man which no other writer could because of his own family history, along with his extraordinary talent and accomplishments.”

Production commences in October and will be filmed in Melbourne and Vietnam.

Check out the August-September issue of IF Magazine for a feature on SBS, including an interview with managing director Michael Ebeid and director of TV and online content, Tony Iffland.