May 19, 2021
On the heels of hammering out control of WarnerMedia from AT&T, Discovery CEO Davis Zaslav has announced he is leaving his seat on the board of directors of Lionsgate, effective immediately.
Zaslav’s resignation is not the result of any disagreement with Lionsgate on any matter relating to its operations, policies or practices, according to the May 19 regulatory filing.
Also leaving the board is businessman David Sanchez, nephew of media mogul John Malone, who replaced his uncle on the board in 2018.
Zaslav’s departure comes after he signed a six-year extension to remain CEO at Discovery through 2027. He is also heading the combined media assets of WarnerMedia and Discovery following the latter’s $43 billion majority stake purchase of the former Time Warner, which includes Warner Bros., Turner and HBO. Current WarnerMedia CEO Jason Kilar is reporting planning his exit strategy after little more than a year on the job.
Lionsgate, along with Paramount Pictures, is seen as a potential acquisition target due to its deep movie and TV show content portfolios and streaming assets. Lionsgate operates the Starz pay-TV platform, as well as multiple Starz-branded streaming services. Paramount+, of course, is the brand name of the former CBS All Access SVOD platform owned and operated by ViacomCBS.