FSM managing director Rick Schweikert departs after 32 years; issues statement regarding exit

RickSchweikert (1).jpgSydney-based FSM managing director Rick Schweikert has announced his departure from the creative studio after 32 years.

Says Schweikert: "FSM was established by Steve Dunn and myself in 1984. We started with a seed of an idea to break with the conventional post company ways and as the saying goes, just do it for ourselves. Like any start up, the first few years were challenging, terrifying and huge fun - we had nothing except determination and a desire to do good work. We had no money, earned no personal income, did everything ourselves but still managed to convince a bank to loan us enough for our first set of equipment. And we've now borrowed, and paid back, many, many millions.
"We were hugely dedicated, still are, spending countless hours at all times of the day working on project after project. Just ask our partners and they'll confirm the sleepless nights, the long days and the crazy uncertainty of it all.

"Now, 32 years later, having made thousands and thousands of commercials, many feature films, hundreds of corporates, documentaries and TV series, innumerable music clips, quite a few birthday videos, too many research animatics and employed hundreds of talented people, the partnership is concluding. Not in a bad way, but it's time for me to move on.

"I'm extremely proud of what we've achieved. Not only is the company the longest running post business in the country, it's been a privilege and pleasure to work with many of this countries most talented people. And probably as satisfying is giving a start to the professions of people we employed over the years who have gone on to prosperous and successful careers.

"There are too many people to thank, but I have to single out my wife Louise as having the patience of a saint and the sense of humour to allow me to follow the dream. And to Stephen and his wife Neidra who have shared the journey.

"The business continues in safe hands and an exciting future, with Stephen solely at the helm. He's ably assisted by an enthusiastic team, including newly appointed EP Craig Sloane, CD Emile Rademeyer and a great crew of designers, compositors and production staff. I leave on the best of terms and with a massive sense of achievement that we survived this long, through significant economic upheavals along with cultural and professional changes. We've done pretty well to make a life for ourselves and families, expand our horizons and most importantly, maintain our sanity.

"To all my clients and colleagues, both past and present, thank you for all the support, encouragement, friendship and entertaining anxious times. There's been some great moments in advertising that make us laugh, and sometimes shake our heads in wonder - it's been one hell of a ride. As my daughter says, I'm now funemployed.

41 Comments

Jackie Archer said:

Wow Rick. You were my first boss in the industry, inspiring, firm but fair - and always a great supporter. Working for you for 7 years was fantastic. You'll be missed in the industry. Enjoy your funemployment. You deserve it.

Noel Magnus said:

Rick,

You're one of the really good guys in this industry.

Talented, successful and decent.

You will be missed by many of us.

Enjoy the sanity of the real world.

Your Daughter said:

Proud of ya Dad! Thanks for all the years of family videos (they'll be a few more right?)

Ian Johnson said:

Congratulation's Rick,

You've done brilliantly to survive and evolve for 32 years in what's been an incredibly crazy industry.

Best of luck with what ever you do next.

Josie said:


Wow Rick - you played this card close to your chest ;)
Wonderfully written farewell. Enjoy the next chapter whatever that may bring and thanks for being one of the good guys.
FS&M and the Industry will miss you.

Mike said:

Rick, you're an inspiration to us all mate. It was a breeze working with you whenever I got the chance. All the best with whatever lies ahead. And good luck with those footy tips!!!

Gary Dawson said:

Beautifully written Rick, wishing you all the very best for the future, Gary

HeatherCook said:

Rick! What a legend, you'll be sorely missed at FSM I'm sure. It's always been a pleasure to work with you & I have always really appreciated your support, great sense of humour and willingness to go above and beyond for me, so thank you very much. All the best with your new adventure. I look forward to seeing what happens next. Make sure you take time out to relax before diving in again! Lots of love Heather x

Top Gun said:

Rick, simply put - you are a legend. Congratulations on the many achievements and milestones reached throughout your incredibly successful career.

Peter Bowlay said:

Hi Rick,
Just heard the news that you have decided to move on to a quieter life outside the industry after 32 years with your baby.
Congratulations on your achievements with FSM, it's been a pleasure to watch you and Steve grow the company to what it is today.
I was proud that you made that big decision to leave us at Videolab to pursue your ambitions and goals, although I must admit that I was disappointed that you both left us.
I am pleased to have known you since those very early days, and also admired your determination to make FSM a leader in post production.
My best wishes to you and Louise for the future, I hope we get the opportunity of a game of golf on the Gold Coast in the coming months.
Congrats again and thank you for your friendship and help over the past years.
Peter Bowlay.

George Saada said:

You'll be sadly missed @ FSM Rick. Wishing you a very rosy future it's been an amazing ride, I'm sure you'll enjoy your next ride. Best wishes. GS

Leezy said:


Good on you, Rick - enjoy the 19th like never before.

Leaving party????

Heinz said:

Thanks also for the home videos Dad and for putting a kennel roof over my head back in the early days....and for not letting those crazy artists you used to hang with take me to Berlin. All the best with your new ventures!
Heinz

Mike Carlton said:

I do not normally comment, but this one is warranted.

WOW!!!

Seems like only yesterday, in that shared house at St Ives, but it was actually 1983, when you and SD said you were opening on your own.

And it has been a great success, and pleasure to work with you both, over the years.

Enthusiastic. Passionate. Fair. Honest. Honourable. ... Friends.

Hell, I wish I could bow out on those terms!

Cheers to you, Rick and to Louise.

Fly the flag, Steve.

MC

Gerry Brooks said:

Hi Rick,
Congratulations on surviving 32 years in a very tough and fast changing industry You have Steve have done a great job with a great contribution to the Post-Production industry in Australia. Good luck with your future directions.
Gerry Brooks

David Gillies said:

Congratulations Rick.
I remember when you rented that brothel in Willoughby Road, like it was yesterday.

We at Edit Point welcomed the competition and the collaboration. I'm pleased that you were able to outlive us and go on to thrive and grow to become an icon in a very difficult industry during difficult but exciting times.

Enjoy your well earned break and look back with pride on a career well built.

David Gillies

Kit Kat said:

Well done Rick. From humble beginnings to establishing the iconic brand that FSM is still to this day. Give yourself a well deserved pat on the back before you put your feet up for a well deserved break.

Warwick Majcher said:

Congradulations Rick,
What an amazing 32 years its been. Post now is certainly not what you began with in Ridge Street.
It's always been terrific working with you and all the amazing people you employed and encouraged over these years.
FSM certainly made the agency and the client look good.

All the best to you and whatever you do next.
Warwick

Russ Maehl said:

Fantastic….You’ve got your release papers and can help swell the ranks of funemployed tennis and golf players (well not so much golf…not real game, maybe more of a board game)…good luck.

Rusty

Glenn said:

Mmm Rick, That bit was missed out of the conversation 2 weeks ago!
I have [as you know] enjoyed being a part of FS+M for the last 20 odd years and in particular working with yourself for a multitude of your self characteristics.
I wish you [+ Louise] all the very best.
And now that you've expressed your 'love' interests, a drink or 10 is in order!!
Glenn

Congratulations Rick
You have been a Champion of the Industry!
Enjoy the next part of your journey, I hope it is as fruitful as the first ..
And remember "keep your head down and don't try and hit the ball to hard"!!!

Ray Falzon said:

Congratulations Rick.....FSM has been an inspirational company, I was having dinner at the Chinese opposite the FSM building and telling my son about the success story. You guys led the way for small businesses like RFX...thanks for being a great guy

FSM Employee said:

Rick - you are a champion and there's no denying that. We will miss you, but wish you all of the best. What a career! What a company you have helped built! Exciting times for FSM ahead... you played a major role in establishing this new foundation, as well as shaping an exciting future ahead of us!

Rey said:

...it was always an effortless pleasure to work with you Rick. Have fun on your next journey whatever that will be.
All the best Rey

Greedy said:

It's been that long hasn't it?
To think you've survived and thrived in
the flakiest bunch of industries
for so long is a measure of how just
indispensable you've made yourself.

Maurice Giacomini said:

Wow Rick I still remember Willoughby Road your 1st office with FSM. I was starting my own company also and you put together the showreel.
All the best with your new life!

Nicholas said:

Hey Rick, Although I only spent a short time at FSM back in the Ridge St days, you were a great boss. There is a bunch of post production people around Australia and the globe that owe there careers to you. You and Steve should be very proud of what you have achieved and I wish you all the very best for the future.

Never ever said:

Never worked for FSM. Always knew of them. Never met you either. Reading that makes me wish I had done all three. Post is incrediably tough. It's the people that make it worth while. Congrats and fairwell X

Gav said:

So much to admire about you and what you have done. And thanks for saving me on many occasions, most memorably on my first ever TVC. Tom Mac had given me a simple Xmas retail shoot involving a Xmas tree festooned with hundreds of sparkling lights. Naturally I'd managed to screw it up. Faced with footage of a scraggly tree with a few lights twinkling sadly, I started to panic. Without missing a beat, Stu spent way more than the allocated hours weaving magic and transforming it into Tom's vision. You had the good grace to not mention it to the producer. It was only much later that I realised how rare that was.

Rebecca Quayle said:

Congratulations Rick on your funemployment. You were an amazing boss during my decade at FSM. You should be so proud of the opportunities you and Steve have given so many people in the industry. There is such risk in owning a business but because of your willingness to take on the challenge so many people have benefitted over the years, including myself. So thank you and all the best to you and Louise for the future. Rebecca.

Maggie said:

Congratulations Rick - working with you was wonderful, so helpful and dedicated.
Enjoy your funemployment, you deserve it!

Karen Tran said:

Rick, congratulations on an amazing 32 years; both you and Steve truly set the standard for post in Australia. I am forever grateful to you guys for giving me my first job at a real company and my first real job in the industry. The friendships and bonds that grew out of my time there,that are still strong to this day, is testament to the culture you and Steve built. Enjoy your well-earned rest!

James Douglas said:

All the best Rick. I've known you guys for 20 of those years. FSM was without exception a great company to deal with and run by a true gentleman! Thanks for all your support over the years.

Lizzie O'Hara-Boyce said:

Beautifully written, Rick, and your words brought back many happy times at FSM, which was home from home for all of us at M&C. Thank you for the warm welcome and your infinite patience. Can't wait to see what you'll do next! Lizzie

Dale Roberts said:

Congrats Rick. We have enjoyed watching the ongoing success of FSM over many years. A business that can flourish in even the toughest of times boils down to great people, great work and great management. Cheers from everyone at KOJO.

Josh said:

Thanks for all your help and generosity, Rick.
Good luck!

Tim Arrowsmith said:

Rick, what a journey! Well done and best of luck for the future.

Damien Whitney said:

Wow Rick, that's fantastic. You will be greatly missed in the industry and the industry was so much the better for having you around. No doubt you will have a fabulous time experiencing funemployment. All the best. Damien

John Buck said:

Good luck Rick, you created, defined and survived the post-production market in Sydney. Many people owe you a debt for your diligence and hard work.

Christoph said:

Rick, You gave me an opportunity, many years ago to expand my horizons in the film industry and that was achieved. I enjoyed the ten years working with the crew at FSM with Steve and yourself. Thanks Rick for answering the door that Sunday morning at North Sydney after riding my push bike many kilometres to personally drop of my resume a long stretch that most definitely paid off. Enjoy80) I had fun at FSM.
Christoph Lengel

slim said:

All the best to you rick......so many happy memories....slim....

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