Rainmaker Entertainment names Michael Hefferon as president

Vancouver-based CGI animation and production studio Rainmaker Entertainment has appointed film and TV veteran Michael Hefferon as president and executive producer.

The announcement came Wednesday from the company’s newly appointed chairman and CEO Craig Graham.

His hire comes as Rainmaker regroups after an earlier takeover deal by China’s Xing Xing Digital was abandoned.

Catherine Winter earlier left Rainmaker as president and executive producer ahead of the Xing Xing Digital deal being unveiled by the company’s board of directors.

Hefferon joins Rainmaker from Vancouver-based animation company Bardel Entertainment, where he was VP business development and executive producer.

He previously worked as managing director of Australian CGI animation company Flying Bark Productions PTY Ltd., and as senior VP of production and development at German animation studio BFC Berliner Film Companie Productions GmbH, and at Toronto-based Catalyst Entertainment.

Hefferon was also founder and president of his own studio, Phoenix Animation, with production credits including Fern Gully, Thumbelina and All Dogs Go To Heaven II.

Elsewhere, Bardel Entertainment CEO Delna Bhesania was appointed to Rainmaker’s board of directors.

Rainmaker Entertainment’s recent project is Escape From Planet Earth, in partnership with the Weinstein Company, slated for a February 2013 release.

With files from Etan Vlessing