London-based CG feature studio Locksmith Animation has appointed Dónall Crehan as Chief Business Officer, effective immediately. Crehan will oversee the company’s legal and business affairs, business strategy and development, commercial operations and the implementation of its long and short-term strategic plans. He reports directly to CEOs & Founders Sarah Smith and Julie Lockhart. Crehan joins Locksmith from All3Media, where he was General Counsel. The appointment is a key step as Locksmith continues to define itself as a home for first class international animation talent.
“As we continue to invest in the best international creative talent, grow our IP library and production slate and as our films take shape it is vital that we also build a business structure which supports creative growth and ensures global reach,” said Lockhart. “Dónall is one of the most respected legal and commercial experts in the U.K. film and media industry with a proven track record of successful strategic business development.”
“I am delighted to have been given this opportunity to join Locksmith Animation at a very exciting time for the company,” said Crehan. “I look forward to working with the entire Locksmith team to build a great home for the best creative talent in the industry and to support them as they make inspiring cinema for the global family audience.”
Prior to joining Locksmith, Crehan was General Counsel for the All3Media Group, the U.K.’s largest international group of independent production companies, where he provided legal counsel and risk management advice for the company’s portfolio of 21 global entities. He led legal aspects of the company’s M&A and investment activity, international commercial partnerships and disputes, regulatory compliance and outsourcing. Prior to All3Media, he was Senior Legal Director at Endemol Shine, and prior to that was Group Head of Legal for the Shine Group, having been with Shine since leaving private practice as a corporate lawyer.
Ron’s Gone Wrong, Locksmith Animation’s first project through its deal with Twentieth Century Fox, is currently in production and will be released on November 6, 2020. Founded in 2014 by Smith, Lockhart and Elisabeth Murdoch, Locksmith Animation produces its projects end-to-end in London, with partner Double Negative providing digital production.