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SBS commissions drama about Australian drug trafficker Van Nguyen executed in Singapore

SBS has commissioned a new drama series, its first in three years.

Better Man, is a four part mini-series from FremantleMedia Australia and Bravado Productions about the true story of an Australian convicted and executed for drug trafficking in Singapore.

The story follows Van Nguyen, 25, known as “the Baby of Death Row” in the Singapore prison Changi, who is caught when trying to provide for his struggling family, and executed after a three year legal battle on 2 December 2005.

The series is written and directed by AFI-winning film-maker Khoa Do.

Michael Ebeid, SBS managing director 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.”

The mini-series is the first commission for Tony Iffland, SBS director of TV and online content.

Iffland said: “It is a uniquely Australian story and one that only SBS would tell. SBS is proud to support this production which underlines our commitment to making the very best home-grown programming for all Australians.”

FMA’s creative director and the show’s 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 will begin in October in Melbourne and Vietnam and is due to screen in 2013.

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