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The Orchard Head Content Executive Paul Davidson Steps Down

At the finish line of its sale to 1091 Media, distributor the Orchard’s film and TV head Paul Davidson is parting ways with the company.

In an amicable split, the creative executive addressed staff in person and in a company-wide memo on Tuesday in New York City to inform them of his decision.

“While I am very appreciative that 1091 asked me to continue to run the company in its new iteration, for me the time is right to look toward my own next chapter and build something new,” Davidson wrote in his note.

In his roughly five years, Davidson has overseen the acquisition and release of many of the indie distributor’s titles, including the Oscar nominee for documentary feature “Cartel Land,” the Sundance hit “The Overnight,” acclaimed fashion doc “Dior & I,” and the cult film “What We Do in the Shadows.”

Before the Orchard, Davidson led Microsoft’s Xbox Video service. He also worked as a producer on series for Fox, ABC, and MTV and worked in theatrical distribution and production for New Line Cinema and the Jim Henson Company.

Read his full memo below.

Team,

When I came to The Orchard almost five years ago, it was clear there was great potential for the film division, which would build off the amazing achievements of the music side of the business, with the same spirit of transparency and true partnership. We saw the opportunity to replicate this success for film directors, producers and content creators, and we launched a new strategy for the film group, bolstered by a stellar, wildly creative team of leaders passionate about film and smart about business.

I’m very proud of what we’ve built with The Orchard in such a short amount of time: a well-recognized brand associated with high-quality films, strategic thinking, collaboration and creativity, and a track record of critically acclaimed (and award-nominated) films including What We Do in the Shadows, Hunt for the Wilderpeople, American Animals, The Hero,We the Animals, The Overnight, Birds of Passage, Neruda, Beats Per Minute, Cartel Land, Life, Animated, The Dawn Wall and so many more – about 4,000 more to be exact.

Now, as the company ends one chapter and begins another, I have made the decision to move on from The Orchard film group. While I am very appreciative that 1091 asked me to continue to run the company in its new iteration, for me the time is right to look toward my own next chapter and build something new. There are exciting things on the horizon, and I look forward to sharing more when I’m able.

I want to thank Brad for his support for all these years. He has always been a huge supporter of what we’ve been doing and has been an incredible partner. Without his support and that of the management team at The Orchard, we would not be where we are today. I also want to thank the entire team, whose hard work and passion attracted a stable of incredible filmmakers, emerging new voices and prolific producing teams which, in turn, spread the word about the valuable brand we’ve built.

This has been an immensely personal journey for me, and I am incredibly proud of the work we have all done together and of the relationships we have forged. I wish you all the very best!

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