David Linde

David Linde (born February 8, 1960) is the CEO of Participant, a position to which he was appointed in October 2015.[1] Prior to his role at Participant, Linde had leading roles at Universal Pictures, Focus Features, Good Machine, and Lava Bear Films, where films released during his tenures collectively earned more than $14 billion globally, with 158 Oscar nominations and 34 wins.[2]

David Linde
OccupationBusinessman, film producer
OrganizationParticipant, CEO
Notable work
Arrival (producer)
Spouse(s)Felicia Rosenfeld

Early life and educationEdit

Linde was born and raised in Eugene, the son of law professor and Oregon Supreme Court Justice, Hans A. Linde[3] and Helen Tucker Linde. His father is Jewish and his mother is Presbyterian.[4][5] In 1978, Linde graduated from South Eugene High School.[3] After attending Swarthmore College, he moved to New York City[6] where his girlfriend (later his wife) had moved.[7] In New York, he worked as a paralegal for Paramount Pictures from 1984-1988[6] where he supervised sales of select international theatrical rights at Paramount Pictures;[8] and then as co-head of the international department at Fox Lorber Associates from 1988-1991[6] where he directed the sales of more than 300 independently produced film, documentary and television titles.[9]


Linde joined Miramax Films in 1991 as Vice President of Acquisitions before being promoted to Executive Vice President and Head of Sales as the founding executive of Miramax Films International.[10] While at Miramax, he oversaw the international distribution of Quentin Tarantino's Pulp Fiction, Woody Allen's Mighty Aphrodite, Wes Craven's Scream and Anthony Minghella's multi-Academy Award-winning The English Patient.

Linde served as both co-president and partner of the production company Good Machine and President and founder of Good Machine International, beginning in January 1997.[11] GMI handled the international distribution of films including Ang Lee's Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (of which Linde was executive producer),[12] Alfonso Cuaron's Y Tu Mamá También (of which Linde was executive producer).[13] Joel Coen and Ethan Coen's The Man Who Wasn't There,[14] and Todd Field's In the Bedroom.[15] Films distributed by GMI earned six Academy Awards from 22 nominations, including two for Best Picture and five Golden Globes from 18 nominations. While at Good Machine, Linde also executive produced Todd Solondz's Happiness.[16] In 2002, Linde and his partners sold the Good Machine companies to Universal Pictures and created Focus Features.[17]

As co-president of Focus Features and president of its genre production unit, Rogue Pictures.[18] Linde oversaw a slate that featured Roman Polanski's The Pianist, Sofia Coppola's Lost in Translation and Fernando Meirelles' The Constant Gardener, as well as Ang Lee's Brokeback Mountain.[19] During Linde's tenure at Focus, the company was honored with 53 Oscar nominations resulting in 11 Academy Awards. In 2008, Linde oversaw the sale of Rogue Pictures to Relativity Media.[20]

In 2002, Linde was promoted to co-chairman of Universal Pictures and subsequently, Chairman.[21] During his tenure, Universal significantly grew its international distribution and production platform across all media and launched Universal's family/animation banner, Illumination Entertainment.[22]

In 2011, Linde founded Lava Bear Films, a film production and financing company developing projects specifically designed for the global marketplace, and served as the company's CEO.[23]

Linde has long-lasting relationships in global filmmaking, most recently serving as executive producer of Alejandro González Iñárritu's Academy Award-nominated Biutiful,[24] producer of Fernando Meirelles' 360,[25] and as executive producer of Zhang Yimou's The Flowers of War starring Christian Bale.[26] Most recently, Linde executive produced Yimou's Coming Home (2014 film) which premiered at the 2014 Cannes Film Festival,[27] Jonas Cuaron's Desierto,[28] and Alfonso Cuaron’s Roma.[29]

Since joining Participant as its CEO in 2015, Linde has overseen two best picture Academy Award winners — Green Book and Spotlight — along with a best documentary feature Oscar for American Factory and two best foreign-language Oscars for Roma and A Fantastic Woman. He also expanded the company’s content approach to include episodic television series and digital short form video through the acquisition of SoulPancake.[30] In September 2019, Participant extended Linde’s contract as CEO with a multi-year deal.[31]


Throughout his career Linde has been recognized with numerous awards including The Will Rogers Motion Picture Pioneer of the Year,[32] General Electric’s chairman’s Award for Performance Turnaround,[8] the Anti-Defamation League’s Distinguished Entertainment Industry Award,[33] the 21st Israel Film Festival – Visionary Award,[34] New York Magazine: Best Of The Industry Award, and the Gotham Award For Distinguished Achievement, among others.[8] Linde serves on the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ board of governors,[35] on Film Independent's board of directors,[36] and the New Road School's board of trustees.[37]

Personal lifeEdit

Linde is married to Felicia Rosenfeld.[3]


  1. ^ McClintock, Pamela (October 13, 2015). "David Linde Named CEO of Participant Media". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved October 13, 2015.
  2. ^ "Variety V500". Variety. December 17, 2019. Retrieved December 17, 2019.
  3. ^ a b c The Register Guard: "His shining ‘spotlight’ David Linde, formerly of Eugene, helms the company behind the Oscar winner" By Mark Baker February 24, 2017
  4. ^ Klug, Lisa (June 23, 2016). "Who said Jews run Hollywood? Inaugural list of 100 prominent players in Tinseltown shows a lack of diversity -- and a whole lot of MOT". Times of Israel.
  5. ^ Bloom, Nate (February 13, 2017). "The tribe goes to the Oscars". J. The Jewish News of Northern California.
  6. ^ a b c Variety Magazine: "David Linde Talks About His Career, China, the Future of Film at Locarno" by John Hopewell August 5, 2016
  7. ^ The Register Guard: "His shining ‘spotlight’ - David Linde, formerly of Eugene, helms the company behind the Oscar winner" By Mark Baker March 5, 2016
  8. ^ a b c "David Linde "Produced By" Conference Bio". Archived from the original on February 2, 2017. Retrieved November 17, 2011.
  9. ^ Levine, Syndney (October 11, 2011). "TIFF 2011 and into AFM". indieWIRE. Archived from the original on November 14, 2011. Retrieved November 18, 2011.
  10. ^ Roman, Monica (December 16, 1996). "LINDE, GOOD MACHINE PARTNER". Variety.
  11. ^ "October Machine-ready". Variety. July 30, 1997.
  12. ^ McCarthy, Todd (May 17, 2000). "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon – Film Review". Variety.
  13. ^ Johnston, Sheila (September 14, 2001). "Y Tu Mama Tambien – Film Review". Screen Daily.
  14. ^ Dawtry, Adam (May 10, 2001). "'Man' tops Machine slate sales". Variety.
  15. ^ Goodridge, Mike (February 21, 2002). "GMI cleans out Bedroom, as buyers hail Hero". Screen Daily.
  16. ^ McCarthy, Todd (May 17, 1998). "Happiness – Dark Side of 'Happiness' Explores Sexual Taboos". Variety.
  17. ^ Harris, Dana (May 2, 2002). "Good Machine buy alters Focus at U". Variety.
  18. ^ Hernandez, Eugene (March 17, 2006). "With Indiewood Films Riding High, David Linde Named a Top Exec at Focus' Hollywood Parent". indieWIRE.
  19. ^ Rooney, David (March 24, 2004). "Focus widens lens with Rogue". Variety.
  20. ^ Siegel, Tatiana (January 4, 2009). "Relativity reels in Rogue". Variety.
  21. ^ Snyder, Gabriel (March 17, 2006). "Pair has Universal appeal". Variety.
  22. ^ Barnes, Brooks (April 3, 2011). "For Illumination Entertainment, Animation Meets Economic Reality". The New York Times.
  23. ^ Adler, Tim (February 16, 2010). "David Linde Resurfaces With New Company". Deadline.
  24. ^ Honeycutt, Kirk (October 14, 2010). "Biutiful – Film Review". The Hollywood Reporter.
  25. ^ Adams, Mark (September 10, 2011). "360 Movie Review". Screen Daily.
  26. ^ Kay, Jeremy (November 8, 2011). "Wrekin Hill deal throws The Flowers of War into Oscar race". Screen International.
  27. ^ Lee, Maggie (May 21, 2014). "Cannes Film Review: Coming Home". Variety.
  28. ^ "Cannes: Im Global Boards Jonas Cuaron's Thriller 'Forsaken,' Starring Gael Garcia Bernal". News for Charles Gillibert. Retrieved March 23, 2015.
  29. ^ Sharf, Zach (July 25, 2018). "Alfonso Cuarón Talks 'Roma': Why the Oscar Winner Partnered With Netflix and Became His Own Cinematographer (Exclusive)". Indiewire. Retrieved July 25, 2018.
  30. ^ McNary, Dave (September 12, 2019). "Participant Extends David Linde's Contract as CEO". Variety. Retrieved September 12, 2019.
  31. ^ Hipes, Patrick (September 12, 2019). "Participant Re-Ups CEO David Linde In Multiyear Deal". Deadline. Retrieved September 12, 2019.
  32. ^ "The Will Rogers Motion Picture Pioneer of the Year Officiall Winners List" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on April 25, 2012.
  33. ^ Snyder, Gabriel (April 9, 2006). "A pro-social focus". Variety.
  34. ^ Shai, Oren (November 1, 2006). "THE ISRAELI FILM FESTIVAL". Films in Review. Archived from the original on January 26, 2012.
  35. ^ "Board of Governors". Oscars.org. September 2, 2014.
  36. ^ "David Linde". Film Independent.
  37. ^ "New Roads School Board of Trustees". New Roads School.