Colin Callender

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Sir Colin Callender
BornMay 1952 (age 66)
London
Alma materUniversity of East Anglia
OccupationFilm executive and executive producer
Spouse(s)Elizabeth Gaine
ChildrenIan Callender
Caroline Callender
Charlotte Callender

Sir Colin Nigel Callender CBE (born May 1952) is an award-winning English television, film and theater producer. He is the CEO at Playground Entertainment, a production company with offices in New York and London.

Early life and education[edit]

Callender was born to an Orthodox Jewish family[1] in London, the son of Lydia and Martin Callender.[2] He has a brother, Neeman, and a sister, Claire.[2] Callender holds a BA with Honors in Philosophy and Politics from the University of East Anglia.[3]

Career[edit]

Early career[edit]

Callender started in the entertainment industry as a member of Britain's National Youth Theatre and began his production career in 1974 at the Royal Court Theatre in London as stage manager working with directors such as Mike Leigh, David Hare and Sam Shepard.[4] Later he joined Granada Television as a graduate trainee where he worked on Cat on a Hot Tin Roof the Granada co-production with NBC starring Natalie Wood, Robert Wagner and Laurence Olivier.

Primetime Television[edit]

In 1978 Callender founded Primetime Television where he quickly established himself as one of the UK's leading television and film producers.[3] At Primetime he pioneered the pre-selling and co-producing of UK drama with foreign broadcasters. When the UK's fourth network Channel Four was created, Primetime was the first independent production company to be commissioned by the new channel with the television adaptation of the RSC's groundbreaking nine-hour stage play The Life And Adventures Of Nicholas Nickleby. It was Callender's first credit as a producer and he went on to win the Emmy Award for Outstanding Miniseries in a category that included other nominees The Winds Of War and The Thorn Birds.[5]

Other Primetime productions included D.H.Lawrence’s The Captain’s Doll starring Jeremy Irons for the BBC and ARD Germany, Separate Tables starring Alan Bates and Julie Christie directed by John Schlesinger.[6]

The Callender Company[edit]

He later created The Callender Company and during this time, with productions like Peter Greenway's The Belly Of An Architect which was the official British entry to the 1986 Cannes Film Festival, John Schlesinger's Madame Sousatzka starring Shirley MacLaine; The Bretts a 13-hour mini-series for Masterpiece Theatre, Prisoner Of Honour starring Richard Dreyfuss and Mr. Halpern And Mr. Johnson starring Laurence Olivier and Jackie Gleeson, Callender was in the forefront of bringing together talent from the UK and the US, which has become one of the hallmarks of his career.[6]

During this time Callender also created and produced the British cult hit The Last Resort which changed the face of late night television in the UK and launched the career of British TV personality Jonathan Ross.[7]

HBO[edit]

In 1987, Callender moved to US to become executive producer of HBO's newly formed East Coast production unit.[8] HBO Showcase produced 27 films receiving widespread critical acclaim and earning HBO its first Emmy Award for drama. In 1996 Callender and HBO CEO Jeffrey Bewkes created the film division HBO NYC. Shortly thereafter he was appointed president of HBO Films, based in LA, which rapidly developed a reputation for consistently producing an award-winning slate of sophisticated and provocative television and feature films.

During his tenure Callender oversaw the production of over 115 award-winning movies and mini-series, among them:[9]

Callender was also responsible for HBO's theatrical films such as the breakout indie hit My Big Fat Greek Wedding and Gus Van Sant’s provocative movie Elephant about a Columbine like high-school shooting which won him the Best Director Award as well as the coveted Palm d’Or at the 2003 Cannes Film Festival.[14]

Under Callender's stewardship HBO Films won an unprecedented total of:

Picturehouse[edit]

Callender was also the driving force behind HBO's joint venture with New Line Cinema – the distribution company Picturehouse[15] whose slate included Robert Altman’s highly acclaimed Prairie Home Companion, Kit Kittredge: An American Girl, Run Fatboy Run, Rocket Science, Last Days, Mary Harron’s The Notorious Bettie Page, JA Bayona’s The Orphanage, Olivier Dahan’s La Vie en Rose for which Marion Cotillard won the Academy Award for Best Actress,[16] and Guillermo del Toro’s Pan’s Labyrinth that won two Oscars at the 2006 Academy Awards.[17]

Playground[edit]

In 2009, Callender left HBO Films and moved to New York to produce theatre. He founded Playground in 2012.[18]

Theatre[edit]

Playground's first stage production was Lucky Guy starring Tom Hanks by the late Nora Ephron, which tells the story of tabloid reporter Mike McAlary, winner of a 1998 Pulitzer Prize.[19] It won two Tony Awards and had six nominations.[20] In 2014, Callender produced Harvey Fierstein’s Casa Valentina, which was nominated for four Tony Awards including Best Play,[21] and Hedwig and the Angry Inch starring Neil Patrick Harris, which won four Tony Awards including Best Revival of a Musical.[22] Callender also produced the production of Kenneth Branagh’s New York stage debut in Macbeth at the Park Avenue Armory,[23] and was a co-producer of Jez Butterworth's The River starring Hugh Jackman.[24]

Recent Broadway productions include Dear Evan Hansen, which won six Tony Awards including Best Musical,[25] and Robert Icke and Duncan Macmillan’s 1984, based on the novel by George Orwell.[26] Recent West End productions include Dreamgirls and The Glass Menagerie, both produced alongside Sonia Friedman Productions.[27]

Alongside Sonia Friedman Productions and Harry Potter Theatrical Productions, Callender is one of the producers of the two-part stage play Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, an expansion of the Harry Potter franchise, which opened on July 30, 2016 in London's Palace Theatre.[28] In 2017, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child won nine Olivier Awards, the biggest single win ever for one production in the history of the awards.[29] Harry Potter and the Cursed Child opened on Broadway on April 22, 2018 in the newly renovated Lyric Theatre and was nominated for ten Tony Awards and went on to win six, including Best Play.[30] Harry Potter and the Cursed Child will open in Melbourne's Princess Theatre in early 2019,[31] in San Francisco's Curran Theatre in the Fall of 2019,[32] and in Hamburg's Mehr! Theatre in 2020.[33]

Television[edit]

Playground company has produced over 65 hours of television since inception. Series include the Golden Globe and Emmy nominated miniseries Dancing On The Edge for BBC and Starz,[34] the Golden Globe and Emmy nominated miniseries The White Queen[35] for BBC and Starz and its sequel The White Princess for Starz, the Golden Globe nominated anthology series The Missing for BBC and Starz, Dracula for NBC,[36] Wolf Hall,[37] a Golden Globe and BAFTA-winning six-part miniseries starring Mark Rylance, Damian Lewis and Claire Foy for BBC and Masterpiece, which was an adaptation of Hilary Mantel’s Booker prize winning novels Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies, and The Dresser,[38] a television adaptation of Ronald Harwood’s classic play starring Ian McKellen and Anthony Hopkins for BBC and Starz.[39]

In 2017 Callender produced Academy Award winner Kenneth Lonergan’s adaptation of Howards End for the BBC and Starz, Heidi Thomas’s adaptation of Little Women for the BBC and Masterpiece, and Richard Eyre’s adaptation of King Lear starring Anthony Hopkins and Emma Thompson for the BBC and Amazon Prime Video.[40]

Callender will next produce Lucy Kirkwood’s adaptation of her play Chimerica for Channel 4,[41] and The Spanish Princess, a sequel to The White Queen and The White Princess, for Starz.[42]

Credits[edit]

Primetime Television[edit]

Television[edit]

  • Swallows and Amazons (1984)
  • Separate Tables (1983)
  • Mr. Halpern and Mr. Johnson (1983)
  • The Captain’s Doll (1983)
  • The Deadly Game (1982)
  • The Life and Adventure of Nicholas Nickleby (1982)
  • Brendon Chase (1980-1981)

The Callender Company[edit]

Television[edit]

  • Prisoner of Honour (1991)
  • The Last Resort with Jonathan Ross (1987–1997)
  • The Bretts (1987)
  • Timeslip (1985)
  • White City (1985)
  • Arch of Triumph (1984)
  • Scrabble (1984-1985)

Feature Films[edit]

HBO[edit]

Television Films

Television Miniseries

Feature Films

Playground[edit]

Television

Theater

  • Harry Potter and the Cursed Child (2020), in Hamburg
  • Harry Potter and the Cursed Child (2019), in San Francisco
  • Harry Potter and the Cursed Child (2019), in Melbourne
  • Harry Potter and the Cursed Child (2018–present), on Broadway
  • 1984 (2017), on Broadway
  • The Glass Menagerie (2017), in the West End
  • Harry Potter and the Cursed Child (2016–present), in the West End
  • Dreamgirls (2016–present), in the West End
  • Dear Evan Hansen (2016–present), on Broadway
  • The River (2014), on Broadway
  • Hedwig and the Angry Inch (2014–2015), on Broadway
  • Macbeth (2014), at the Park Avenue Armory in New York
  • Casa Valentina (2014), on Broadway
  • Lucky Guy (2013), on Broadway

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Category Nominated Work Result
1983 Primetime Emmy Award Outstanding Limited Series The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby Won
2002 Writers Guild of America Awards Evelyn F. Burkey Award Colin Callender Won
2003 Anti-Defamation League Humanitarian Award Colin Callender Won
2003 Creative Coalition Visionary Award Colin Callender Won
2006 Geffen Playhouse Distinction in Theater Award Colin Callender Won
2006 Jacob Burns Film Center Vision Award Colin Callender Won
2006 Humanitas Prize Kiezer Award Colin Callender Won
2013 Tony Award Best Play Lucky Guy Nominated
2013 Satellite Award Best Miniseries or Television Film The White Queen Nominated
2013 Satellite Award Best Miniseries or Television Film Dancing on the Edge Won
2013 Golden Globe Award Best Limited Series or Motion Picture Made for Television Dancing on the Edge Nominated
2013 Golden Globe Award Best Limited Series or Motion Picture Made for Television The White Queen Nominated
2014 Golden Globe Award Best Limited Series or Motion Picture Made for Television The Missing Nominated
2014 Drama League Award Outstanding Production of a Broadway or Off-Broadway Play Lucky Guy Nominated
2014 Drama League Award Outstanding Production of a Broadway or Off-Broadway Play Casa Valentina Nominated
2014 Drama League Award Outstanding Production of a Broadway or Off-Broadway Musical Hedwig and the Angry Inch Won
2014 Outer Critics Circle Award Outstanding New Broadway Play Lucky Guy Nominated
2014 Outer Critics Circle Award Outstanding New Broadway Play Casa Valentina Nominated
2014 Outer Critics Circle Award Outstanding Revival of a Musical Hedwig and the Angry Inch Won
2014 Drama Desk Award Outstanding Revival of a Broadway or Off-Broadway Musical Hedwig and the Angry Inch Won
2014 Tony Award Best Play Casa Valentina Nominated
2014 Tony Award Best Revival of a Musical Hedwig and the Angry Inch Won
2014 Critic's Choice Television Award Best Miniseries Dancing on the Edge Nominated
2014 People's Choice Award Favorite TV Movie / Miniseries The White Queen Nominated
2014 Primetime Emmy Award Outstanding Limited Series The White Queen Nominated
2015 BAFTA Television Award Best Drama Series The Missing Nominated
2015 BAFTA Television Award Audience Award The Missing Nominated
2015 Golden Nymph Award Best Long Form Fiction Series The Missing Nominated
2015 Golden Globe Award Best Limited Series or Motion Picture Made for Television Wolf Hall Won
2015 Peabody Award Entertainment Programming Wolf Hall Won
2015 Primetime Emmy Award Outstanding Limited Series Wolf Hall Nominated
2015 Critic's Choice Television Award Best Miniseries Wolf Hall Nominated
2015 Satellite Award Best Miniseries or Television Film Wolf Hall Nominated
2016 BAFTA Television Award Best Drama Series Wolf Hall Won
2016 Broadcasting Press Guild Award Best Drama Series Wolf Hall Won
2016 Royal Television Society Award Best Drama Serial Wolf Hall Nominated
2016 Golden Nymph Award Best Long Form Fiction Series Wolf Hall Nominated
2016 Television Critics Association Award Outstanding Achievement in Movie or Miniseries Wolf Hall Nominated
2016 Golden Globe Award Best Limited Series or Motion Picture Made for Television The Dresser Nominated
2016 Satellite Award Best Miniseries or Television Film The Dresser Nominated
2016 Evening Standard Theatre Award Best Play Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Won
2016 Outer Critics Circle Award Outstanding New Off-Broadway Musical Dear Evan Hansen Won
2016 Drama League Award Outstanding Production of a Broadway or Off-Broadway Musical Dear Evan Hansen Nominated
2017 Drama League Award Outstanding Production of a Broadway or Off-Broadway Musical Dear Evan Hansen Won
2017 Lucille Lortel Award Outstanding Musical Dear Evan Hansen Nominated
2017 Tony Award Best Musical Dear Evan Hansen Won
2017 WhatsOnStage Award Best New Musical Dreamgirls Nominated
2017 WhatsOnStage Award Best New Play Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Won
2017 South Bank Sky Arts Award Theatre Award Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Won
2017 Laurence Olivier Award Best New Play Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Won
2017 Laurence Olivier Award Best New Musical Dreamgirls Nominated
2017 Laurence Olivier Award Best Revival The Glass Menagerie Nominated
2018 Drama League Award Best Production of a Broadway or Off-Broadway Play Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Won
2018 Outer Critics Circle Award Outstanding New Broadway Play Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Won
2018 Tony Award Best Play Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Won
2018 WhatsOnStage Award Best West End Show Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Won
2018 South Bank Sky Arts Award Television Award Howards End Won
2018 BAFTA Television Award Best Miniseries Howards End Nominated
2018 Golden Nymph Award Best Long Form Fiction Series Howards End Nominated
2018 Television Critics Association Award Outstanding Achievement in Movie or Miniseries Howards End Pending

Personal life[edit]

He is married to attorney Elizabeth Gaine with whom he has two daughters, Caroline and Charlotte. He also has a son Ian from a previous marriage.

Callender was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire in the 2003 Birthday Honours for services to the UK film and television industries in the USA[43][44] and was knighted in the 2016 New Year Honours for services to the British creative industries.[45]

Callender is a trustee and supporter of the NYU Tisch School of the Arts, the New York Public Theater and The Creative Coalition. In the past, he has also been a trustee of the New York branch of the British Academy of Film and Television Arts.[46]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Jackman, Josh (January 25, 2016). "Golden Globe winner compares outside status of growing Jewish in Britain to Harry Potter". The Jewish Chronicle. And he said his childhood, as an Orthodox Jew in post-war London, shared many of the themes in Harry Potter
  2. ^ a b Callender, Colin (January 1, 2016). "Lydia Callender". The Jewish Chronicle.
  3. ^ a b "Subscribe to read". Financial Times. Retrieved 2018-07-19.
  4. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (2014-04-04). "Q&A: Producer Colin Callender On His Next Chapter, Converging Theater, Film & Television And Taking On Harry Potter". Deadline. Retrieved 2018-07-19.
  5. ^ "Spotlight: Colin Callender". Television Academy. Retrieved 2018-07-19.
  6. ^ a b "Colin Callender". IMDb. Retrieved 2018-07-19.
  7. ^ "The Callender Company". BFI. Retrieved 2018-07-19.
  8. ^ Nancy Mills (30 September 1990). "Shooting Their Own In a war for viewers, cable channels and the networks are producing their own movies in record numbers". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2 December 2012.
  9. ^ Schneider, Michael (2008-10-14). "Colin Callender exits HBO". Variety. Retrieved 2018-07-31.
  10. ^ "John Adams". HBO. Retrieved 2018-07-31.
  11. ^ Staff, Variety (2005-05-12). "HBO premieres 'Empire Falls' miniseries". Variety. Retrieved 2018-07-31.
  12. ^ Roshanian, Arya (2016-08-18). "'All the Way' Director Jay Roach Remembers First Emmy Wins For 'Recount'". Variety. Retrieved 2018-07-31.
  13. ^ Greene, Hanh Nguyen,Ben Travers,Liz Shannon Miller,Steve (2018-04-24). "The Best Limited Series of the 21st Century, Ranked". IndieWire. Retrieved 2018-08-02.
  14. ^ "'Elephant' trumpets Palme d'Or surprise". The Independent. Retrieved 2018-07-31.
  15. ^ "New Line, HBO open Picturehouse for business". Screen. Retrieved 2018-07-31.
  16. ^ Editorial, Reuters. "Marion Cotillard wins Oscar for best actress". U.S. Retrieved 2018-07-31.
  17. ^ "Pan's Labyrinth - 2006 Academy Awards Profile". www.boxofficemojo.com. Retrieved 2018-07-31.
  18. ^ Jeremy Kay (15 October 2008). "Colin Callender leaves HBO Films after 21 years at the company". Screen Daily. Retrieved 2 December 2012.
  19. ^ "Producer remains 'committed' to bringing Nora Ephron's 'Lucky Guy' to Broadway". Entertainment Weekly. Associated Press. 28 June 2012. Retrieved 10 December 2012.
  20. ^ Desk, BWW News. "LUCKY GUY Recoups; Becomes Highest Grossing Play in Broadway History". BroadwayWorld.com. Retrieved 2018-08-02.
  21. ^ "Harvey Fierstein's Casa Valentina Closes Its Doors June 29 | Playbill". Playbill. Retrieved 2018-08-02.
  22. ^ Gerard, Jeremy (2014-05-30). "Ex-HBO Film Chief Colin Callender Plays Tony Poker With `Hedwig' `Casa Valentina', `Harry Potter'". Deadline. Retrieved 2018-08-02.
  23. ^ Brantley, Ben. "A Fast and Furious 'Macbeth' at Park Avenue Armory". Retrieved 2018-08-02.
  24. ^ "Hugh Jackman Rushes 'The River' Into Profit". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2018-08-02.
  25. ^ "DEAR EVAN HANSEN | A New Musical On Broadway | Official Site". Dear Evan Hansen. Retrieved 2018-08-02.
  26. ^ "Playground USA". Playground Entertainment. Retrieved 2018-08-02.
  27. ^ "Casting confirmed for Lucy Kirkwood's 'Chimerica' - Channel 4 - Info - Press". www.channel4.com. Retrieved 2018-08-02.
  28. ^ "About The Show | Harry Potter and the Cursed Child London". Harry Potter and the Cursed Child London. Retrieved 2018-08-02.
  29. ^ Tartaglione, Nancy (2017-04-09). "Olivier Awards: 'Harry Potter And The Cursed Child' Wins Record 9 – Full List". Deadline. Retrieved 2018-08-02.
  30. ^ Walters, Joanna (2018-06-11). "Tony awards: The Band's Visit and Harry Potter triumph in politically charged ceremony". the Guardian. Retrieved 2018-08-02.
  31. ^ "Melbourne Tickets On Sale This August | Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Melbourne". Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Melbourne. 2018-06-17. Retrieved 2018-08-02.
  32. ^ "Harry Potter and the Cursed Child | San Francisco". Harry Potter and the Cursed Child | San Francisco. Retrieved 2018-08-02.
  33. ^ "Harry Potter and the Cursed Child comes to Hamburg, Germany | Harry Potter and the Cursed Child London". Harry Potter and the Cursed Child London. 2018-07-05. Retrieved 2018-08-02.
  34. ^ "ANCHOR BAY FILMS ACQUIRES SEEKING JUSTICE STARRING NICOLAS CAGE, JANUARY JONES AND GUY PEARCE". 14 December 2011. Retrieved 10 December 2012.
  35. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (2012-09-04). "Starz Picks Up 'White Queen' Drama Series, Colin Callender To EP In 2-Year Starz Deal". Deadline. Retrieved 2018-08-02.
  36. ^ Tartaglione, Nellie Andreeva,Nancy (2012-11-28). "BBC Two Preps 'Howards End' Miniseries Produced By Colin Callender". Deadline. Retrieved 2018-08-02.
  37. ^ "Why Americans Will Fall For "Wolf Hall" And The Latest Complicated Hero, Thomas Cromwell". Fast Company. 2015-04-03. Retrieved 2018-08-02.
  38. ^ Tartaglione, Nancy (2015-03-20). "Anthony Hopkins & Ian McKellen Talk Tyrannical Directors, State Of TV & Finally Working Together On 'The Dresser'". Deadline. Retrieved 2018-08-02.
  39. ^ "Productions". Playground Entertainment. Retrieved 2018-08-02.
  40. ^ Tartaglione, Nancy (2017-10-05). "'King Lear': Anthony Hopkins, Emma Thompson To Reunite For BBC2 & Amazon". Deadline. Retrieved 2018-08-02.
  41. ^ White, Peter (2018-01-26). "Lucy Kirkwood's U.S./China Drama 'Chimerica' Set For C4 Adaptation". Deadline. Retrieved 2018-08-02.
  42. ^ Otterson, Joe (2018-03-15). "Starz Greenlights Limited Series 'Spanish Princess' Based on Philippa Gregory Novels". Variety. Retrieved 2018-08-02.
  43. ^ "No. 56963". The London Gazette (Supplement). 14 June 2003. p. 25.
  44. ^ Gary Susman (16 June 2003). "On Her Majesty's Secret Service". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 2 December 2012.
  45. ^ "No. 61450". The London Gazette (Supplement). 30 December 2015. p. N2.
  46. ^ https://www.imdb.com/name/nm0130456/bio?ref_=nm_ov_bio_sm]]

External links[edit]