Sundog Taps New Creative Director, First COO


Factual indie Sundog Pictures has appointed Katie Buchanan as its new creative director and Claire Featherstone as its first chief operating officer.

Buchanan takes up her new position on March 19. She most recently served as executive producer at Films of Record. She has also been head of documentaries at Keo Films and exec producer at Lightbox and Minnow Films.

Claire Featherstone has held senior production roles for more than two decades. She most recently was a consultant working with indies, providing commercial and strategic expertise across production, distribution, finance and funding. Before that, she was managing director of Flame Television.

Johnny Webb, the CEO of Sundog Pictures, said: “Sundog has experienced fantastic growth since we started the business in 2012 and the time is right for us to enhance our senior team. The appointment of both Katie and Claire not only brings two industry leaders into Sundog, but will enable us to further expand both our domestic and international reach.”

Webb continued: “Katie’s experience really sets her apart in the industry. She has the ability to take serious subjects and deliver them with a lightness of touch that both attracts critical plaudits and engages audiences.

“The way viewers engage with factual content is changing, so it’s essential that content is more compelling than ever. Skint, The Romanians Are Coming and Love and Drugs on the Street are some of my favorite programs—they’re sensitive, intelligent and purposeful. Katie is made for Sundog.”

Buchanan commented: “Sundog are one of the stand-out producers of factual content in the U.K. Their commitment to making stories that matter marks them out as one of the best in the industry. I’m a huge fan of their work—shows like David Baddiel’s The Trouble with Dad and Mary Portas’s Barbie, The Most Famous Doll in the World, and their films with Reggie Yates are all compelling and high quality. Sundog are not only diverse in terms of output—from short-form to TV docs and films—but also in the wide range of platforms they work with. They have a fresh, exciting approach and are really making a difference with their programming. I’m delighted to be joining such a talented and committed team.”

Featherstone stated: “Sundog are one of the most interesting indies working in the U.K. at the moment with a depth and quality of factual programming [that] is hard to beat. I admire their drive to bring premium factual to new audiences. I look forward to helping them expand their programming further on non-traditional platforms and searching for new collaborations in the U.K. and internationally. I’m thrilled to be joining them at such an important time in their development and feel excited by the possibilities.”

Webb added: “Claire’s skills have been honed from leading the growth of a successful indie, so she is perfectly placed to help take Sundog to its next stage of development. We not only want to expand our work in the U.K. market, but also grow our footprint in the U.S. We have significant opportunities in that market and many projects under discussion. Claire is the perfect person to steer us through this path of international expansion.”