Australian
Screen

an NFSA website

Australian Story (1995 - current)

Reality series
Weekly x 30 minutes

Series synopsis:

Each Monday evening at 8pm, the ABC broadcasts this half hour program about an Australian, often a personality but sometimes an unknown. These biographical stories are nearly always fascinating, often inspiring, narrated by the person themselves, usually with added comment and interviews with those who know and love the person being profiled.

Curator’s Notes:

While head of News and Current Affairs at the ABC, Paul Williams was looking for something to replace A Big Country, which he’d worked on as a rural reporter and filmmaker until its demise in the late 1980s. An Australian Story unit was established in Brisbane with Deb Fleming – an experienced Brit – as the executive producer, with producers from all over the country feeding in programs.

Almost from the start, the program began to capture audience interest and win awards. Presented by Caroline Jones, with occasional guest presenters, the program, at its best, is inspiring and uplifting. Often notoriously media-shy people have been tempted to participate because there’s no editorial comment, only themselves and their nearest and dearest tell their story.

Titles in this series

Australian Story – Absolute Beginner 2006

Just over eight years ago, Marg Ward lost her husband when he died suddenly of a heart attack. Marg was 56. After two terrible years, she began again with a new life. She went to university to build on her ...

Australian Story – A Man for All Seasons 1999

Wayne Bennett was born on the wrong side of the tracks. His father was a violent and hard drinking fettler, who left his wife and kids when the family was still very young. Wayne left school and began work at ...

Australian Story – Of Droughts and Flooding Rains 2002

This is the story of a man so obsessed by an idea that it has consumed his life and almost destroyed his family. Peter Andrews’s idea is that the land can be returned to a self sustaining ecology by some ...

Australian Story – Since Adam Was a Boy 1997

Adam Sutton is a quintessential cowboy. He’s fearless, fun-loving and homosexual. He’s a horse wrangler and rodeo rider but the biggest risk he ever took was to reveal the secret of his sexuality to the world. This is Adam’s story ...

Australian Story – With This Ring 2005

When Australian Story first recorded the life of this gutsy young couple, Gayle and Mac Shann were newly married and struggling to come to terms with the horrific injuries that Gayle had sustained when she became entangled in a drilling ...