Founded in 2011 by Teddy Schwarzman, Black Bear is a management, production and financing company offering clients and partners an unparalleled home for creative collaboration. We represent singular artists, providing guidance across all platforms.  We produce original, award-winning content across all genres. We finance feature films and television series at each phase of the creative process, from development to distribution.  We target a global audience and strive to make an impact.

Black Bear has offices in Santa Monica, CA and London, UK. Our sister company, Elevation Pictures, is based in Toronto, ON.

Our Team

TEDDY SCHWARZMAN | President & CEO, Black Bear Pictures

Teddy Schwarzman serves as President & CEO of Black Bear Pictures, and oversees all operations of the company, including development, production, finance and strategic planning.

Schwarzman has produced a range of content, a sampling of which includes THE IMITATION GAME, Academy Award winner for Best Adapted Screenplay and nominated for eight Academy Awards including Best Picture; J.C. Chandor’s ALL IS LOST, which earned Robert Redford the Golden Globe nomination for Best Actor; SUBURBICON, directed by George Clooney and starring Matt Damon, Julianne Moore and Oscar Isaac; BEN IS BACK, written and directed by Peter Hedges, starring Julia Roberts and Lucas Hedges; Dave Franco’s THE RENTAL; and I CARE A LOT, written and directed by J Blakeson, starring Rosamund Pike, Peter Dinklage, Eiza Gonzalez, Chris Messina and Dianne Wiest, for which Pike won the Golden Globe for Best Actress, Comedy/Musical. Schwarzman has also served as Executive Producer of Dee Rees’ MUDBOUND, nominated for four Academy Awards, and Heidi Ewing’s moving film, I CARRY YOU WITH ME.

A member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and Producers Guild of America, Schwarzman sits on the Board of Directors of Elevation Pictures Corp., one of Canada’s leading film and television distributors. Schwarzman also sits on the Board of the Pacific Council on International Policy and the Cedars-Sinai Board of Governors. Schwarzman earned a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Pennsylvania and a Juris Doctor, cum laude, from Duke University School of Law, where he sits on the Board of Visitors.

MICHAEL HEIMLER | Partner, Head of Production & Operations, Black Bear Pictures

Michael Heimler is a Partner of Black Bear Pictures, and serves as Head of Production & Operations for the company. At Black Bear since 2013, Heimler is actively involved with all projects on Black Bear’s slate, focusing on operations, physical production, and finance, as well as reviewing creative submissions and serving on the Board of Directors of leading Canadian distributor, Elevation Pictures.

Most recently, Heimler produced Dave Franco’s Somebody I Used To Know starring Alison Brie for Amazon Studios, Martin Campbell’s Memory starring Liam Neeson, Guy Pearce and Monica Bellucci, and J Blakeson’s I Care a Lot starring Rosamund Pike, Peter Dinklage, Eiza Gonzalez, and Dianne Wiest. Heimler executive produced Neil Burger’s The Marsh King’s Daughter starring Daisy Ridley and Ben Mendelsohn, Heidi Ewing’s Sundance award winning I Carry You With Me, Gabriela Cowperthwaite’s Our Friend starring Jason Segel, Dakota Johnson, and Casey Affleck, Chad Hartigan’s Little Fish and Dave Franco’s The Rental starring Alison Brie and Dan Stevens.

Heimler also served as executive producer on Peter Hedges’ Ben is Back, starring Julia Roberts and Lucas Hedges, Light Of My Life, written, directed by and starring Casey Affleck, and served as Co-Producer on Gold, directed by Stephen Gaghan and starring Matthew McConaughey.

Prior to Black Bear, Heimler worked in the motion picture talent department of United Talent Agency in its New York office, and earned a Bachelor of Arts in Communication Arts – Film and Television from The University of Wisconsin – Madison.

ADAM RAICHILSON | Head of Business Affairs, Black Bear Pictures

Adam Raichilson is the Head of Business Affairs at Black Bear Pictures, where he oversees all business and legal affairs related to the company’s film and television slate, as well as its joint ventures and other strategic partnerships.

Prior to joining Black Bear, Adam was an associate in the Entertainment, Sports, and Media Group at Latham & Watkins, where he represented a wide spectrum of entertainment industry clients, including studios, networks, digital platforms, tech start-ups, sports teams and unions, and independent production companies in the navigation of complex media-related transactions. Adam’s broad experience includes industry-specific mergers and acquisitions, debt and equity financings, strategic joint ventures, corporate restructurings, and finance, production, and distribution agreements for motion pictures, television programs, and other intellectual property assets.

Adam earned his Juris Doctor degree from the University of Southern California, Gould School of Law, where he graduated Order of the Coif. Prior to attending law school, Adam earned a degree in Film & Television from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts and founded a media production company called Revive Media.

KATHRYN THAL | Vice President, Black Bear Global

Kathryn Thal joins Black Bear Global as Vice President after departing Anonymous Content, where she spent two and a half years as a Creative Executive with a focus on furthering development in the international space. Prior to her time at Anonymous Content, Kathryn served as a Manager of Development at Hunting Lane. She is an alumnus of the agent trainee program at ICM Partners, from which she transitioned into a role as an executive assistant in HBO’s drama development department.

CHRISTOPHER CASANOVA | Vice President, Film & Television, Black Bear Pictures

Christopher Casanova is a Vice President of Film and Television at Black Bear Pictures, where he has worked since 2018.

At Black Bear, Christopher is actively involved across the company’s Film and TV slates, with a focus on filmmaker-driven genre fare. Recent projects include Dave Franco’s directorial debut, THE RENTAL, and J Blakeson’s I CARE A LOT, which recently premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival.

Prior to joining the team at Black Bear, Christopher worked within Endeavor Content’s single picture finance and sales division. He began his career in the mailroom at William Morris Endeavor.

A second generation Cuban-American and a native Texan, Christopher earned a Bachelor of Science in Radio-Television-Film from The University of Texas at Austin.

SLEENA WILSON | Director of Development, Film & Television, Black Bear Pictures

Sleena Wilson is a Director of Development of Film and Television at Black Bear Pictures. Originally from Sydney, Australia, Sleena joined the team following her selection as the recipient of the 2019 Australians In Film emerging producer placement with Village Roadshow Pictures and Animal Logic in Los Angeles. Prior to this, she worked in film and television development at Aquarius Films in Australia, and started her career in TVC production. Sleena earned a Bachelor of Arts in Communications majoring in Media Arts and Production from the University of Technology Sydney, as well as a Graduate Certificate in Creative Producing from the Australian Film Television and Radio School.

DAVID RAYMOND | Assistant, Black Bear Pictures

David Raymond is the assistant to Michael Heimler at Black Bear Pictures. Prior to joining the team at Black Bear, David worked in talent management at Brillstein Entertainment Partners, the talent division of William Morris Endeavor, and at the film and television literary agency Hotchkiss Daily & Associates. David began his career in Chicago theatre working with Goodman Theatre and Steppenwolf Theatre, among others. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre and Performance Studies from Stanford University.

ISABEL INADOMI | Assistant, Black Bear Pictures

Isabel Inadomi is the assistant to Teddy Schwarzman. Prior to joining the team at Black Bear, Isabel interned in development at Peacock/NBCUniversal, Heyday Films, and Temple Hill Entertainment. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in International & Public Affairs from Brown University.

KEITH REDMON | Partner, Black Bear Management

Keith Redmon is a Partner of Black Bear Pictures, and Head of Black Bear Global.

A veteran producer and manager, Redmon was nominated for an Oscar for producing Alejandro G. Iñárritu’s THE REVENANT, which won three Academy Awards, including Oscars for direction and for Leonardo DiCaprio’s lead performance. Redmon also produced George Clooney’s THE MIDNIGHT SKY for Netflix; John Hillcoat’s TRIPLE 9; and Neil Burger’s upcoming THE MARSH KING DAUGHTER. In television, Redmon has served as an executive producer on Olen Steinhauer’s “Berlin Station” for Epix and Justin Marks’ “Counterpart” for Starz starring J.K. Simmons, among other credits.

Prior to Black Bear, Redmon spent nearly two decades at Anonymous Content, where he was a Partner and Head of International. He spearheaded the formation of Chapter One, a U.K. joint venture with United Agents and Casarotto Ramsay & Associates; AC Nordic, a Scandinavian joint venture and AC Brazil.

JOHN FRIEDBERG | President, Black Bear International

John Friedberg is a Partner of Black Bear Pictures, and serves as the President of Black Bear International and Black Bear UK, overseeing all aspects of the company’s international film strategy. Friedberg leads a team out of the LA and London offices with a focus on International Sales, Direct Theatrical Distribution in the UK and Ireland, and International Acquisitions and Co-Productions.

Friedberg’s recent film credits include The Contractor starring Chris Pine, disaster thriller Greenland directed by Ric Roman Waugh starring Gerard Butler, Scottish Highlands thriller My Son starring James McAvoy and Claire Foy, Academy Award-nominated The Mauritanian directed by Kevin Macdonald and starring Jodie Foster, and Golden Globe-winner I Care A Lot starring Rosamund Pike. Upcoming films include Ferrari directed by Michael Mann and starring Adam Driver and Penelope Cruz, The Interpreter directed by Guy Ritchie and starring Jake Gyllenhaal, Operation Fortune: Ruse de guerre directed by Guy Ritchie and starring Jason Statham and Hugh Grant, Greenland: Migration starring Gerard Butler, and The Marsh King’s Daughterdirected by Neil Burger and starring Daisy Ridley.

Prior to joining Black Bear, Friedberg served as President of International at STX Entertainment, overseeing all aspects of the studio’s international strategy with a particular focus on International Sales, UK Distribution and Worldwide Acquisitions. He developed the company’s international acquisitions business, and brokered a first-of-its-kind, multi-territory strategic partnership with Amazon Studios. Friedberg also worked in production, sales and financing at QED International on films including Fury directed by David Ayer and starring Brad Pitt, and District 9 directed by Neill Blomkamp.

A member of the International Academy of Television Arts & Sciences and Producers Guild of America, Friedberg sits on the Board of Directors of Black Bear International and Black Bear UK. Friedberg earned a Bachelor of Arts from Wesleyan University.


1739 Berkeley Street,
Santa Monica CA 90404
tel: (424) 291-6000