After three years as Director of Development for Lionsgate Films, production executive Zachary Studin has joined Lava Bear Films as Vice President of Production. Lava Bear films was founded earlier this year by former Universal Pictures chairman David Linde,
Full press release reprinted below:
Burgeoning global film production and financing entity Lava Bear Films, has named production executive Zachary Studin as the company’s Vice President of Production and promoted Jennifer Semler to Director of Production. Lava Bear is the formal name of the company recently founded by David Linde.
As Lava Bear starts to produce its films designed for a worldwide audience, Studin will be instrumental in sourcing new projects and managing ongoing development and production of the company’s slate. In her new role, long-time David Linde team member Jennifer Semler will coordinate post production of all the company’s films. Studin and Semler will report to Tory Metzger, Lava Bear’s Head of Production.
“As we begin to ramp up our production slate it is important to create a team of executives who are experienced in identifying material and passionate about bringing projects from the page to the screen,” said Metzger. “Both Zachary and Jennifer exceed these criteria and we are proud to have them as part of the Lava Bear team.”
Studin joins Lava Bear following his three years with Lionsgate Films as Director of Development where he managed various aspects of development, pre-production, production and post-production on the studio’s slate of projects. Prior to Lionsgate, Studin served as the Director of Development for Alli Shearmur’s production shingle. Additionally, Studin has worked at Paramount Pictures as the Executive Assistant to the Co-President of Production as well as assistant to producer Scott Rudin. He is a graduate of The George Washington University in Washington, DC.
Semler started with David Linde as his executive assistant when Linde served as Chairman for Universal Pictures. In 2010, prior to the founding of Lava Bear, Semler worked closely with Linde on films for which he has served as Executive Producer or Producer including Alejandro Gonzales Innaritu’s Oscar® nominated BIUTIFUL, Fernando Mereilles’ upcoming 360 featuring Ben Foster, Anthony Hopkins, Jude Law and Rachel Weisz, and Zhang Yimou’s HEROES OF NANKING starring Christian Bale. Prior to joining Linde, Semler was a writers’ assistant for America’s Funniest Home Videos for five seasons and also produced several segments for the successful television series. She also served as an associate producer for the syndicated television show That’s Funny. Semler is a graduate of Ithaca College.
ABOUT LAVA BEAR FILMS
Lava Bear Films was founded in 2011 as a film production and financing company developing projects specifically designed for the global marketplace. Leveraging CEO David Linde’s industry experience, success at building filmed entertainment related businesses and harnessing both traditional means of distribution as well as new technologies, platforms and markets, the company offers tremendous opportunities to creative partners worldwide. Reliance Entertainment is a major equity partner in the venture. Lava Bear has a production and distribution agreement with Universal Pictures, whereby Universal will have the first option to co-finance each developed project and distribute the films in the United States and other significant international territories. Independent of Universal, Lava Bear maintains a network of direct output partnerships in several key territories around the globe with leading companies including Entertainment One (eOne), Reliance Entertainment, Italia Films, Nordisk Film, Revolutionary Releasing, Sun Distribution, and Tele München Group.