Top of His Game
New Zealander Bob Hayward has found success in the highly competitive US film industry. Based in Los Angeles, Hayward is the Chief Operating Officer and founding partner of Summit Entertainment, an independent distribution company turned film studio established in 1993. Summit began as a foreign distributor of English-language films and now makes, promotes and distributes its own movies. Its most successful script acquisitions to date include Mr and Mrs Smith and Memento. Hayward graduated from Auckland University in 1982 and promptly embarked on an OE that is yet to finish. “When I first landed, I thought, ‘God, I’m going to the land of whizzkids; I’m going to seem like the yokel from the country’ – and actually I did very well,” he said in a recent NZ Herald interview. Hayward has since worked in 35 different countries and, prior to founding Summit, did internal audits for United International Pictures and ran theatres for Cannon Films.