Derren Lawford, former Creative Director of Woodcut Media has launched DARE Pictures, a cutting-edge production company with a focus on creating a broad range of premium content with diversity and inclusivity at its core for the UK and international market.
Headquartered in London, DARE Pictures covers documentaries, drama, film and podcasts, with the purpose of harnessing the creativity of an award-winning international network of directors, authors, and producers dedicated to bringing inclusive and impactful stories to life.
DARE has several projects in development with talent from Europe, Africa, Asia, the Caribbean and North America, with announcements to follow very shortly. The company’s industry contacts also transcend traditional TV, with extended access to the worlds of fashion, music and advertising.
Derren Lawford, Founder, DARE Pictures said: “DARE Pictures is primed as a new breed of production studio that takes a progressive and transnational approach in uncovering impactful ideas, whilst shining a light on creative talent across multiple cultures and backgrounds from around the world. It’s both a bold and boutique approach to developing, producing and financing incredible stories, which is why DARE is positioned as a unique hub where independent and commercial creators can come together united in a commitment to compelling and premium programming with purpose. As a company, we stand for diversity, allyship, representation and empowerment, and endeavour to reflect those values in everything we do.”
A well established industry executive with 25 years under his belt, prior to DARE, Lawford was Creative Director at Woodcut Media. During his 7 year tenure with the UK indie who he continues to maintain good relations with, he oversaw development & strategy, as well as securing commissions, co-productions and programme finance opportunities. He executive produced a trio of docs that sold to NETFLIX – the BFI funded feature doc Generation Revolution, as well as Mandela, My Dad and Me, and Cut From A Different Cloth, both co-produced with Idris Elba. Further notable EP credits include Fiennes: Return to the Nile a 3-part commission for National Geographic featuring Joseph Fiennes and Sir Ranulph Fiennes, as well as The Ivy, and Football: A Brief History by Alfie Allen to name a few.
Over the past 5 years he has also independently helped develop and mentor 20 plus feature docs filmmakers and projects worldwide, including most recently Reporter/Refugee winner of the 10th ARD Documentary film competition in 2021.
Derren Lawford entered the industry as a trained journalist before helping to launch a youth TV station (whereits.at) and then joining the BBC where he worked for over 10 years. There he helped to launch radio station 1Xtra, SVOD service BBC Global iPlayer, secured a number of BBC Three documentary commissions and was heralded as a short form documentary pioneer advising a then unknown YouTuber, Jamal Edwards. He then went on to launch a content division with award-winning social enterprise and marketing agency Livity before joining the launch team at London Live as a commissioner specialising in documentaries and breaking new, diverse and online talent.