The Submission Process

Proposal Submission
SBS Commissioned Content invites producers and production companies to submit proposals all year round. Please note, due to SBS funding arrangements with the Federal Government, we are only able to commission productions with an Australian producer attached.

Please send proposals to the appropriate genre email address. Proposals should include the Project Submission Form, and various supporting material (such as synopsis, treatment etc). To download the application form, and for a full list of required material please visit: “Putting together a proposal for SBS”.

Information on whether your project is likely to be of interest to us is available from SBS genre sections such as Drama and Comedy, Entertainment, Food, or SBS Documentary, depending on the type of program you have in mind.

Producers should be aware that they will be required to clear all music, including mechanical and synchronisation rights. It is recommended to engage a person with expertise in music commissioning and licensing to assist with this important clearance process.

Please be aware that SBS receives many proposals with similar theme and ideas to projects already in development. SBS therefore cannot be liable if, in the future, a program emerges with similarities to your proposal.

Proposal Assessment
Once SBS receives your program proposal, they are registered confidentially, and an email of acknowledgement is sent to the Producer. The assessment period takes between six to eight weeks. We always endeavour to respond as swiftly as possible. A Commissioning Editor will advise the Producer on the outcome of their proposal via email. Please be aware that SBS is unable to return submitted material.

When considering a program proposal, the Commissioning Editor may enter into discussions with the Producer concerning terms which would accompany SBS’s financial involvement (proposed financing plan) and a proposed time frame for production.

The financing plan needs to include information about approaches to investors, other broadcasters, distributors, sales agents and the relevant board dates for State or Federal funding agencies.

Before a project is recommended to the Editorial Committee meeting,  the Commissioning Editor and Business Affairs Manager will need to know all available details regarding the key creative’s, casting options, crew, company structure, sales, financing and a proposed time frame for production.

Producers may be required to provide written proof of your copyright (from each stage of development), consent forms from the involved creative parties and written permission from the subjects in your program.

The SBS Commissioning Editor, based on information provided by the producer, will recommend the successful proposals to the monthly editorial commissioning meeting for approval.

Editorial Commissioning Meeting
Only projects approved by the editorial committee can be commissioned for either development or production by SBS Commissioned Content. The Committee sits on a monthly basis to consider programs.

If it is approved, the contracting stage commences, and you are issued with a letter of offer which sets out SBS terms. This must be signed before the long form contract is issued. Please refer to “Doing business with SBS” section for further information.


The timetable to commission once approved is subject to negotiation between the Independent Producer and SBS Commissioning Editor.

Further Questions
If you have questions about the submission process, please contact the appropriate genre email address.

Completed Programs

SBS Commissioned Content works with filmmakers at the conception, development or pre-production stages of a project.  If you are looking to sell a completed program for SBS to broadcast, SBS also has an Acquisitions team who work in this area.  Please visit their website for more information: http://www.sbs.com.au/article/107818/get-my-program-on-sbs

Get My Program on SBS

SBS invites distributors and producers of completed programs to submit them for consideration for potential acquisition.

SBS Producer Guidelines

SBS has developed the SBS Producer Compliance Guidelines for factual material in commissioned content.

Working With Us

Guidelines & information for producing a show for SBS.