Lavender, who was a Senior Commissioning Editor at the Channel 4 film division, will join Motive Pictures as Executive Producer. He will work closely with The First and Electric Dreams commissioner Maxwell to build a slate of high-end drama projects for the UK, U.S. and international markets.
As well as the Yorgos Lanthimos duo, Lavender worked on Bart Layton’s American Animals, Michael Pearce’s Beast, Andrew Haigh’s Lean on Pete and 45 Years, David Mackenzie’s Starred Up and Yann Demange’s ’71.
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He also developed Slumdog Millionaire, Anton Corbijn’s A Most Wanted Man starring Philip Seymour Hoffman and Steve McQueen’s Shame starring Michael Fassbender. He is currently completing Justin Kurzel’s The True History of The Kelly Gang starring George Mackay and Russell Crowe, Rose Glass’ Saint Maud, Nick Rowland’s Calm With Horses, and Peter Middleton and James Spinney’s Chaplin.
Maxwell was previously Head of International Drama at Channel 4 and left at the end of the year, having overseen a number of global dramas orchestrated including AMC co-pro Humans, Hulu’s Beau Willimon space drama The First, which was co-financed by Endeavor Content and Philip K. Dick Amazon co-pro Electric Dreams.
Maxwell said, “Sam has earned a reputation as a world-class creative executive with an eye for sublime storytelling from singular screenwriters and directors. As long-form drama and cinema continue to evolve in ever more exciting ways, we couldn’t be happier to have Sam joining us in building a slate of ambitious shows from some of the boldest storytellers in the world.”
Lavender added, “I can’t wait to be part of Motive, to team up with Simon, and to get going on a whole new slate. And I’m extremely excited by the new horizons for dramatic storytelling that we’re seeing today. I’ve had an absolute ball at Film4; it’s been a huge privilege to have worked with so many extraordinarily talented and inspiring people, not least in the Film4 team itself.”
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