Disney Has Hired Their First United Kingdom Based Casting Executive

As competition grows among studios and streamers for a bigger foothold in the fertile UK production landscape, Disney is planting a flag in the sand by hiring its first casting executive in the territory, according to Deadline.

What’s Happening:

  • In 2019, Disney inked a long-term lease for the majority of Pinewood Studios and in recent years has made a host of movies and series in the UK including Snow White, The Little Mermaid, Aladdin, Cruella, Indiana Jones 5, Willow, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Andor and a number of of Marvel titles. Most of these productions feature British cast in prominent and supporting roles.

  • As a result, London-based casting agent Kate Ringsell has joined the House Of Mouse in a permanent role as Vice President, Casting, Walt Disney Studios, 20th Century, Searchlight.
  • Her recent work includes the upcoming Disney film Peter Pan & Wendy, as well as DC’s The Flash and Batgirl.
  • Feature credits also include Netflix’s Army of Thieves, Tolkien, HBO’s Emmy-winning My Dinner With Hervé and DC’s Zack Snyder’s Justice League. TV credits include Transatlantic and Fate: The Winx Saga, both for Netflix.
  • Last year’s official BFI stats revealed a record $7.3BN (£5.6BN) film and high-end TV production spend in the UK. Inward investment spend from studios and streamers accounted for 84% of that.
  • The UK’s infrastructure, tax credits, strong acting and skills base and common language with the U.S. have all allowed it to position itself as one of the world’s primary service industries for major US shoots. New shooting spaces are being developed across the UK to try to match demand.
  • Competition is increasing with the growth of the streamers. Netflix last year renewed a contract with the Pinewood Group for the use of Shepperton Studios and committed to doubling the size of its production space at the facility.
  • It also struck a deal to lease Longcross Studios in Surrey. In February of this year Amazon Prime Video also signed a multimillion-pound deal with Shepperton. Apple is ramping up its production in the UK and has been rumored to be in the market for a permanent home. Warner Bros continues to operate out of the Leavesden facility it bought back in 2010.