|Born||1964/1965 (age 49–50)
|Occupation||Producer, director, writer|
|Relatives||Ladislav Jasek (father)
Anthea Hamilton (mother)
Richard Jasek (born 1964/1965) is a Czechoslovakia-born Australian television producer, writer and director. Jasek was born and raised Prague until his family fled the communist regime and settled in Brisbane. Jasek chose to become a filmmaker after he discovered his father's camera. He would later enrol at the Australian Film, Television and Radio School. Jasek made a short production for SBS Television and traveled to the United Kingdom to work for The National Film School as a guest lecturer. Upon his return to Australia, Jasek began working in television and he is best known for his work with dramas A Country Practice, City Homicide and McLeod's Daughters. In October 2011, it was announced that Jasek had taken over the role of executive producer of Neighbours.
Early and personal life
Jasek was born in the 1960s in Prague to Ladislav Jasek and Anthea Hamilton. He has a sister called Nicola. Jasek's father was a concert violinist who often played for The Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, while his mother was a jeweller, from a winemaking family from Adelaide. Jasek's father travelled a lot and the secret police coerced him into becoming a spy for the communist regime. Of this, Jasek said "There was huge emotional pressure to report on conversations with friends and acquaintances, if you did not, then the consequences were dire! It was possible for the regime to close down your career, you could lose your home and also affect other family members. In extreme cases, they would throw you in prison."
When Ladislav could no longer bear working for the regime, he got himself posted to Brisbane and the family were accepted as asylum seekers. Ladislav was granted Australian citizenship in 1966. The family then moved to New Zealand, Britain and eight years later, returned to Australia. During this period, Jasek decided to become a filmmaker having found his father's movie camera. From the age of eleven, he began making short films with his friends. Jasek later enrolled at the Australian Film Television and Radio School (AFTRS) in Sydney.
Following his graduation from AFTRS, Jasek made a short production for SBS Television before working there for a time. Jasek also worked in the United Kingdom for The National Film School. Upon his return to Australia, Jasek began working on A Country Practice, which was his first major commercial drama. He then directed many television dramas, including Neighbours, Blue Heelers, Stingers, Heartbreak High, The Secret Life of Us, McLeod's Daughters and Home and Away. Jasek has also worked on various mini series for children, including Pirate Islands. For his work on The Secret Life of Us and Something in the Air, Jasek received two Best Direction in a Television Drama award nominations from the Australian Film Institute.
Following the exit of Maryanne Carroll, Jasek took over the role of producer on City Homicide in 2009. In September 2011, Jasek shot the film The Story of Frank Fenner and his Father Charles, which explores the life and scientific achievements of Professor Frank Fenner. On 25 October 2011, it was announced that Jasek would be taking over as the executive producer of Neighbours, following Susan Bower's decision to move on from the job. Jasek was joined by Alan Hardy, who took over the role of producer. He was responsible for a number of multicultural casting choices during his tenure, including bringing the first non-white family into the core cast of the show, although this resulted in later controversy when the family was written out. On 4 December 2013, it was announced that Jasek was to leave his position as executive producer at Neighbours.
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- "2000 Winners & Nominees". Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts. Retrieved 1 March 2012.
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- Kilkelly, Daniel (25 October 2011). "'Neighbours' executive producer Susan Bower quits soap". Digital Spy. Hearst Magazines UK. Retrieved 26 February 2012.
- Houston, Melinda (5 January 2012). "New kids on the block". The Sydney Morning Herald (Fairfax Media). Retrieved 1 March 2012.
- Kilkelly, Daniel (4 December 2013). "Exclusive: Neighbours star praises new producer: 'He knows the show backwards'". Digital Spy. Hearst Magazines UK. Retrieved 4 December 2013.
- Syron, Brian; Kearney, Briann (2008). Kicking Down the Doors - A History of Indigenous Australian Filmmaking 1968-1993. Lulu. ISBN 978-1-84799-364-9.