OUR TEAM

EMMA FITZSIMONS

Emma Fitzsimons has been working in the film and television industry for 17 years as an executive producer and lawyer. She is a partner at Princess Pictures and works across its entire slate as Managing Director.

Emma has executive produced landmark unscripted series My Year 12 Life and My Year 7 Life as well as a number of scripted projects including Yolo Crystal Fantasy, The Divorce, Superwog, How to Stay Married, The Slot and the Emmy Award nominated Wrong Kind of Black.

Having previously worked for UK broadcaster Channel 4, global production company ITV/Granada and children’s TV production and distribution specialists, the ACTF, Emma is experienced in all aspects of content development and financing.

MANAGING DIRECTOR

Mike is a TV and film producer whose recent credits include YOLO CRYSTAL FANTASY for Adult Swim, SMILING FRIENDS for Adult Swim, SUPERWOG (season 2) for ABC, KOALA MAN for Hulu, PARKED for YouTube & Screen Australia, and audio drama THE ORCHARD for Amazon Audible, starring Eric Bana.

Mike worked at Screen Australia since it was founded in 2008 and before that with predecessor agency the Australian Film Commission since 2005. In his role as Investment Manager at the Federal Government’s key screen agency, Mike managed many award-winning projects including online content, TV series, feature films, apps, interactive drama & documentary, and video games, and conceived and ran many initiatives, conferences, and training opportunities. Mike had special responsibility for innovative digital production, exploring new platforms, finance, and revenue models. Amongst several special programs, Mike initiated and managed SKIP AHEAD with Google/YouTube to support content creators to grow online subscribers, and FRESH BLOOD with ABC TV/iview to find the next wave of comedy filmmaking talent. Prior to joining the agency, Mike held positions with the UK Film Council and the South Australian Film Corporation, and worked with production companies Picture Palace North (UK) and animation studio Monkeystack. 

MIKE COWAP

SUPERVISING PRODUCER

Laura Waters founded Princess Pictures in 2003 driven by a vision to support creative ideas, pushing audiences to see the world in new ways.
Born in the US, she studied at Boston University and produced current affairs and documentary television in London and LA.
Laura has overseen the production of a range of groundbreaking series with recent productions including: ABC ME’s ‘vlogumentary’ series My Year 7 Life and My Year 12 Life; the award-winning documentary, The Graceland Happiness Project; Foxtel’s sketch comedy show Open Slather; landmark series from John Clarke, Sporting Nation and The Sounds of Aus; Jonn Safran’s look at cross-cultural love, Race Relations and his documentary on the 2016 Australian vote The Goddam Election!; Peter Helliar’s acclaimed comedy anthology It’s a Date and feature film I Love You Too; Australia’s first Aboriginal sitcom, 8MMM; and Outland, a comedy series about gay science fiction fans. Currently she is delivering a unique comedy/documentary/musical series to the ABC written by Andrew Hansen and Chris Taylor from The Chaser and developing as many mind-boggling things as she can handle.
Recently Princess partnered with the acclaimed animation company Bento Box to not only produce original Australian adult animation, but also establish a studio based in Melbourne. Currently Princess Bento is in production on several animated series, including Yolo and Smiling Friends for Adult Swim, and Koala Man for Hulu.

 

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LAURA WATERS

PRINCESS PICTURES FOUNDER

Laura DiMaio has been working in the animation industry for over two decades and has joined us as the Head of Production at Princess Bento.  

She started her career in animation at HIT Entertainment in London in 2000.  After 8 years at the company she left as Director of Production to move back to Australia.  Since then she’s worked with numerous animation studios and produced an award winning short film.  Her credits include Bob the Builder, Fireman Sam, Bluey, Kitty is Not a Cat, Pingu, Angelina Ballerina, the online series Dan the Man, the feature film Where is Anne Frank? And a few more.

Laura loves her job, a good spreadsheet, a cracking bottle of wine, sunshine, her kids not fighting and eating delicious food.

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LAURA DIMAIO

HEAD OF PRODUCTION

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SUE SKINNER

Sue started off her career as a Chartered Accountant and moved to industry working at various large corporations. She entered the world of TV in 2011 and hasn’t looked back.

Working for Hamish and Andy’s production company, Radio Karate, for ten years Sue worked as a Finance manager and Head Production Accountant in both Entertainment and Drama on many fun shows. Sue joined Princess Bento in 2021. She is inspired by the clever people in the world of animation and a good Excel spreadsheet.  Sue is flexible and adaptable, enjoys a good laugh, loves working with great people and is powered by coffee. When she is not working Sue spends her time with her family, friends and planning her next overseas holiday.

HEAD OF FINANCE

While studying the Advanced Diploma of Screenwriting at RMIT Jess turned 3 weeks of placement into a year and a half of employment and a crash course in animation production. After this she landed a job at BES Animation and in her six years there, she worked across several projects, including three seasons of Kitty Is Not A Cat where she was a writer, script editor and production manager.

After going freelance in early 2020 she has worked across the development of several animated projects with different studios, received development funding for her own adult animated series from Film Victoria and was a writer and the script producer on the series Big Words Small Stories.

Jess thoroughly enjoys working in animated content production and her experience gives her unique insight into the intersection of creativity and production. Something she has also made a part of her roles over the years is championing diversity in crews and encouraging quieter voices into new and different opportunities. This is how she found herself in the role of Associate Producer and Talent Acquisition Manager at Princess Bento, where she is working to curate harmonious and talented teams for each project,

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JESS HOPCRAFT

ASSOCIATE PRODUCER & TALENT ACQUISITION MANAGER

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Coming from a background in the mean streets of high school teaching, Shelley attended the Victorian College of the Arts in 2008 where she studied Producing for Film and Television. During her time there she worked on several short films which went on to enjoy a great deal of festival success around the world. Shelley went on to work in documentary production until she was fortunate enough to receive a Film Victoria internship in animation - after that, there was no looking back.

Shelley is passionate about creating connections with people across all areas of production and is excited to help foster a productive and positive studio environment at Princess Bento.

SHELLEY DRESDEN

ASSOCIATE PRODUCER

As the Studio's Production Assistant/People & Culture Coordinator, Sophie provides support across all Princess Bento shows. She works closely with the Head of Production and the Talent Acquisition Manager in launching new productions, sourcing amazing crews and running the Princess Bento Graduate Program.

Before joining the Princess Bento team, Sophie studied screenwriting at AFTRS while working primarily in live action short films and comedy community channel productions. 

Sophie lives and breathes reading (and writing!) screenplays... and ramen too.

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SOPHIE WENTZEL-LEWIS

PRODUCTION ASSISTANT & PEOPLE & CULTURE COORDINATOR