Working Title’s President of UK Production will officially step down in September; new outfit will have first-look deal with the company

Working Title Films has announced that Debra Hayward is to step down as President of UK Production at the company to launch her own production entity, Monumental Pictures. The new company will have a two-year first look deal with Working Title. 

Hayward will officially step down from her role in September and will immediately transition to act as producer on a number of upcoming Working Title films.

Debra Hayward joined Working Title Films in 1989 as a producer’s assistant before moving on to the development department. She eventually graduated to President of UK Production.

In 2011, Hayward has served as executive producer on the soon to be released Johnny English Reborn, in which Rowan Atkinson reprises his role from the 2003 movie, directed by Ol Parker; Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, the adaptation of John le Carré’s espionage thriller, directed by Tomas Alfredson, starring Gary Oldman, Colin Firth, Tom Hardy and Benedict Cumberbatch; and  the critically acclaimed Senna, the documentary about the life of Brazilian Formula 1 champion Ayrton Senna.

Prior to this she served in the same capacity on Nanny McPhee And The Big Bang and Green Zone, directed by Paul Greengrass. She also executive-produced Atonement, State Of Play, Frost/Nixon, The Boat That Rocked, United 93, Pride And Prejudice, Bridget Jones: The Edge Of Reason and Nanny McPhee. Amongst her other credits, she also served as co-producer on Mr Bean’s Holiday, The Interpreter, Love Actually, Johnny English, About A Boy, Bridget Jones’s Diary, Captain Corelli’s Mandolin and Elizabeth.

Hayward says: “I am incredibly proud of my time at Working Title. I have learnt from two of the best producers in the business. Working with Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner and the incredibly talented women of Working Title has been a privilege and I look back with immense pride at the films and film-makers that I have been fortunate enough to be involved with. I thought long and hard about the decision to strike out on my own, and feel that the time is right to try something new and to focus on producing my own films and TV projects. This deal enables me to maintain my family ties with Working Title and Universal as well as forging new and exciting relationships. With Monumental Pictures I hope to continue bringing quality commercial British films to the international marketplace.”  

Tim Bevan said: “Debra has been an integral part of the company for many years and we are pleased that she will still be working closely with us. I am sure we can expect great things from her as a producer in her own right.”

Eric Fellner said: “Obviously we are sad to see Deb leave after working so closely with her for so many years but we are thrilled that we will be able to continue our relationship as producing partners.”

Hayward’s deal was negotiated by Libby Savill at Olswang.