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‘Little Miss Sunshine’ Producer Big Beach Staffs Up Before Sundance

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Big Beach, the producer of “Little Miss Sunshine,” A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood” and “The Farewell,” has fully relocated from New York to Los Angeles while building out its ranks.

Keetin Mayakara has been tapped by Big Beach as a producer. As a post producer, she has worked on the Oscar-winning documentary “Free Solo,” and most recently, “All the Beauty and the Bloodshed,” another Academy Award nominee. Before joining Big Beach, Mayakara co-produced the “The Year of the Everlasting Storm,” which premiered at Cannes Film Festival, and produced Season 2 of HBO’s “Random Acts of Flyness.”

Austin Cottle joins the company as its head of finance after starting his career at 20th Century Fox with stints in-house at Netflix and Amazon, as well as on the show side where he oversaw “How to Become a Tyrant” for Netflix and “The Heart of Sergio Ramos” for Prime Video.

Zoe Levine has been hired as a creative executive after stints in the television lit department at Fifth Season, which was formerly Endeavor Content, and Bron Studios.

Kristen Kiasaleh has been enlisted by Big Beach as a coordinator. Kiasaleh mostly recently worked at Netflix where she supported the original series drama development team.

The new hires will report to Tim Foley and Michael B. Clark, who have been senior execs at the indie studio for years. Foley and Clark previously led the film and TV divisions, respectively. They will now jointly oversee all aspects of the company. 

Big Beach is coming off a year which saw the debut of Marc Turtletaub’s “Jules,” which was released by Bleecker Street to strong reviews. The company will premiere its latest feature, “Out of My Mind,” at this month’s Sundance Film Festival. Based on the popular novel by Sharon Draper, the film is directed by Amber Sealey, and set to premiere on Disney+ later in the year.

“We’re thrilled to continue the tradition of telling stories that illuminate and uplift,” Foley and Clark said in a joint statement. “We’ve been fortunate to work with so many gifted writers and filmmakers in our company’s history. This is the perfect team of smart and creative minds to help the next generation of storytellers bring their ideas to life.”

Pictured, from left to right: Tim Foley, Keetin Mayakara, Austin Cottle, Michael B. Clark

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