Ampere: Studios Upping Third-Party Streaming Content Licensing

Content syndication of movies and TV shows is enjoying a renaissance — not on television, but rather in the streaming video landscape — thanks to last year’s Hollywood strikes and media companies’ desire to generate incremental revenue opportunities.

New data from Ampere Analysis shows that, after years of major studios employing a walled-garden approach to the distribution of their TV content on streaming, third-party licensing is making a comeback. London-based Ampere found that the number of TV seasons cross-licensed between Netflix and Warner Bros. Discovery’s Max and Discovery+ more than tripled in 2023. Amazon’s overlap with studios’ streaming services also grew significantly.

The analysis focuses on the characteristics of studio TV titles licensed in recent major deals including agreements between NBCUniversal, Disney, WBD and Netflix.

Separately, Sony Pictures and Universal Pictures have aggressively licensed major theatrical releases to third-party streamers, led by Netflix.

Ampere contends that Disney holds the most TV titles with licensing power, owning 148 that were still exclusive to its own streaming services as of December 2023 — a potential licensing cache more than double the size of any other major Hollywood studio.

Across all four major studios’ titles with licensing power, the comedy genre is the most common, accounting for 25% of titles. This is driven by U.S. audiences’ continued interest in a host of locally produced long-running sitcoms, including “The Office,” “The Golden Girls,” “Friends,” “Seinfeld,” and more recently “Brooklyn Nine-Nine.”

The volume of catalog episodes of these shows can keep streaming subscribers engaged longer, making them a valuable retention tool. This is particularly the case as churning and re-subscribing to subscription services is becoming an increasingly common behavior. They are also effective in generating revenue for growing ad-supported tiers.

Among the major studios, 32% of Disney’s catalog TV shows are children’s and family content, led by “Malcolm in the Middle” and “Hannah Montana.”

Not all TV shows with licensing power will necessarily be cross-licensed. Six of the 20 most popular titles in Paramount Global’s content vault are in the “Star Trek” franchise. Studios have been reluctant to give up exclusivity for major franchises as they built their streaming services. But that mindset is changing. WBD’s 2023 license deals included DC-adapted content to Amazon, Netflix and Fox-owned ad-supported platform Tubi.

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Among high-profile third party content licensing, no title enjoyed the spotlight more in 2023 than former USA Networks legal drama “Suits,” which found renewed popularity on Max and Netflix. The show, co-starring Meghan Markle before she quit acting to marry Prince Harry, set a record atop Nielsen’s weekly top 10 most-streamed content across household TVs.

Indeed, the two male leads of the show (Gabriel Macht and Patrick Adams) had their own Super Bowl LVIII ad underscoring the show’s renewed popularity.

Ampere found that 44% of viewers who did not watch Disney+ in the previous month did watch Netflix, making it the most used platform, followed by Amazon and Hulu. These three platforms also top the list among viewers who did not watch other major streamers, including Discovery+, Max, Paramount+ and Peacock.

However, ad-supported platforms Tubi and Pluto TV follow Netflix, Amazon and Hulu as the most watched streaming services among viewers who did not watch Disney+. At 16% for Tubi and 15% for Pluto TV, this puts them ahead of Max, Paramount+ and Peacock.

The prominence of AVOD services extends to other major SVOD platforms as well. Cross-licensing among platforms is more likely to skew towards unscripted content. Almost 30% of the TV seasons shared between major studio backed SVOD platforms are unscripted, which increases to 46% among ad-supports platforms.

More importantly, unscripted titles licensed to AVOD services are more likely to be non-exclusive. Of the unscripted TV seasons, 55% appear on two or more major AVOD services, compared to just 36% of scripted titles, according to Ampere.

“We expect more licensing deals for high-profile titles to be struck in 2024,” Rahul Patel, research manager at Ampere, said in a statement.

The analyst said content licensing to third parties can expand the audience for existing assets, extend shelf life and at the more successful end of the scale, inspire franchise expansion.

“This was the case with ‘Suits’ spin-off series following its success on Netflix and Max,” Patel said. “Such an approach is particularly beneficial in the current climate when commissioners are being increasingly cautious with their content spend.”

Actors Set to Join Writers in Strike Against Studios, Streamers

The Screen Actors Guild (SAG) and American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (AFTRA), the union representing about 160,000 actors in Hollywood, is recommending its board call a strike against the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP), the entity that represents major studios and streamers, including Amazon Studios, Apple, Disney, NBCUniversal, Netflix, Paramount Pictures, Sony Pictures and Warner Bros. Discovery, among others.

Following the expiration of the Producers-SAG-AFTRA TV/Theatrical/Streaming Contracts at 11:59 p.m. PT on July 12, the actors’ union alleges that after more than four weeks of bargaining, the studios have been unwilling to negotiate for higher compensation, better benefits and safeguards against the use of artificial intelligence (AI), among other issues.

While AMPTP has issued no press statement on the current labor situation, major studios and content producers have made no secret their desire to reign in operating costs — spearheaded by Disney’s recent decision to cut 7,000 jobs and $5 billion in costs. Public media companies, in fiscal reports, have pointed to a sluggish post-pandemic box office, burgeoning streaming losses and changes in the way people consume entertainment, for re-assessing their operating budgets.

On a July 13 appearance on CNBC’s “Squawk Box” (from the annual media mogul retreat in Sun Valley, Idaho) Disney CEO Bob Iger said both the writers and actors unions were being unrealistic in their contract demands.

“It’s very disturbing to me,” Iger told CNBC’s David Faber. “We’ve talked about disruptive forces on this business and all the challenges we’re facing, the recovery from COVID, which is ongoing, it’s not completely back. This is the worst time in the world to add to that disruption.”

While Iger agrees that the unions representing writers and actors should negotiate to the benefit of their members, he said the industry recently signed (on June 23) a “fair deal” with the Directors Guild of America that he contends valued their work appropriately. Iger would like to do the same with writers and actors — within fiscal reality.

“There’s a level of expectation that they have, that is just not realistic,” he said. “And they are adding to the set of the challenges that this business is already facing that is, quite frankly, very disruptive.”

A strike would be the first involving both writers (who went on strike two months ago) and actors in Hollywood since 1960.

Duncan Crabtree-Ireland, chief negotiator for the actors, said the studios and streamers have implemented “massive” unilateral changes in the industry’s business model, while at the same time insisting on keeping compensation contracts unchanged.

“That’s not how you treat a valued, respected partner and essential contributor,” Crabtree-Ireland said in a statement.

He contends that the studios’ refusal to engage in the discussions regarding the actors’ key proposals and the “fundamental” disrespect they have shown towards working actors (not headline stars) prompts a strike.

“The studios and streamers have underestimated our members’ resolve, as they are about to fully discover,” said Crabtree-Ireland.

The union will hold a press conference today (July 13), at noon PT at SAG-AFTRA Plaza in Los Angeles, following the conclusion of the National Board vote.

Donna Langley Upped to Head NBCUniversal Studio Group as Comcast President Mike Cavanagh Streamlines Senior Management

Donna Langley, chairman of Universal Filmed Entertainment Group, has been promoted to chairman of NBCUniversal Studio Group and chief content officer, overseeing all content decisions across movies, TV production and streaming (i.e., Peacock).

Langley’s promotion comes as Mike Cavanagh, president of Comcast and interim CEO of NBCUniversal, streamlines senior management, the longtime executive’s first major executive changes since assuming the chief executive job at NBCUniversal following the abrupt April resignation of Jeff Shell due to an inappropriate workplace relationship.

Donna Langley

In a July 6 staff memo, Cavanagh disclosed that NBCUniversal would be split into four business units, with Langley heading the Studio Group, and Mark Lazarus running the NBCUniversal Media Group, which includes streaming. Cesar Conde remains as head of the NBCU News Group, while the Universal Destinations and Experiences Group will be overseen by current theme parks chief executive Mark Woodbury.

Cavanagh did not name a new CEO for NBCUniversal, suggesting he will continue in the position. Matt Strauss, president of direct-to-consumer and international, will continue to run daily operations at Peacock, reporting to Lazarus and Langley.

In the memo, Cavanagh said Langley would be in charge of Universal Filmed Entertainment Group (Universal Pictures, Focus Features, DreamWorks Animation) and Universal Studio Group (Universal Television, Universal Content Productions, Universal Television Alternative Studios, Universal International Studios).

“Donna has been shaping the cultural conversation and creating the framework for what a modern-day studio can accomplish through bold content, impactful marketing and business model innovation,” Cavanagh wrote. “She will leverage her longstanding relationships with the creative community and ability to partner with the most prolific storytellers in our business to unlock a seamless cross-portfolio creative strategy.”

Cavanagh said NBCUniversal currently has 108 active TV series currently airing or streaming globally, and is “consistently responsible” for 50% of the top 10 broadcast series and several No. 1 streaming series across multiple platforms.

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Frances Berwick has been upped to chairman of NBCUniversal Entertainment, reporting to Lazarus and Langley. In addition, four new corporate leaders include Kimberley Harris, Anand Kini, Adam Miller and Craig Robinson. Susan Rover, president of TV content and streaming, is leaving the company after the transition has been completed.

“We appreciate all of Susan’s valuable contributions and thank her for all she’s done during her time at NBCU,” Cavanagh wrote in the memo.

Streaming a ‘Dagger’ in Heart of Studio Assets

For a solid month, the 2023 projection of new theatrical releases bounced between 501 and 502.  Two weeks ago, the number rose to 510, as the projected number of new theatrical releases for 2023.  

Ralph Tribbey

Last week it was 511 … and this week it is 510. At least it is holding steady.

Ditto for the number of top box office films ($25 million plus; $100 million plus), which held at 64 for the third week in a row.

The Super Mario Bros. Movie (Universal Pictures) continues to roar at the box office with $436 million in domestic ticket sales, which looks right now as an easy climb to the half-billion-dollar mark when all is said and done. The only new candidate for the “top-box” arena is writer-director Lee Cronin’s creep-out horror tale, Evil Dead Rise (Warner Bros.), which pulled in $24.5 during its opening week (it will easily push past the $25 million level).

On the transition front from theatrical venues to the home entertainment packaged-media marketplace, Paramount Home Entertainment’s Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves got a lightning-quick move to a May 30 disc release slot — that’s a theatrical-to-home window of just 60 days.

The status for filmmaker James Cameron’s Avatar: The Way of Water remains in limbo.  We’ve speculated — and it is only speculation — that Disney is delaying the release until the latest round of layoffs (industry trades are throwing around 4,000 as the number) have taken place and the dust has settled.  

That aside, it doesn’t help restore the health of the theatrical marketplace when the studio — yes, Walt Disney Studios — takes writer-director David Lowery’s mega-budget film ($150 million-plus) adaptation of the J.M. Barrie classic, Peter Pan & Wendy, and bypasses theaters for Disney+ streaming. To add insult to injury, it was — of course — immediately offered for sale on Blu-ray Disc by one of Mickey Mouse’s “helpers.”  More will certainly follow in the days ahead.

Walt Disney Studios will be reporting earnings on May 10. It will be interesting to see how much red ink is attributed to the current streaming obsession.  

Of note, Universal/Comcast was the first of the season and they are projecting to lose $250 million per month for the balance of the year.   Paramount and Warner Bros. Discovery are back-to-back next week on reporting quarterly earnings.  Last year, these historic “Hollywood” studios averaged $800 million per month in losses attributed to streaming.

How can you possibly justify bypassing theaters for a direct-to-video launch of Peter Pan & Wendy with a production budget north of $150 million?     

Ditto for the $40 million or so production budget associated with director Dexter Fletcher’s Ghosted?  This Apple Studios/Skydance production starring Chris Evans, Ana de Armas and Adrien Brody launched this past week on Apple TV+ and was immediately released on Blu-ray from several “helper”/”void-filler” — polite words for “pirate” — sites.  

Apple TV+ still hasn’t released the Best Picture-winner for 2021, writer/director Sian Heder’s CODA, on DVD, Blu-ray or 4K Ultra HD, but plenty of Apple TV+ “helpers” have gladly stepped up to fill the void.

The industry’s inattentive monitoring of what is happening with their film and series production assets is not limited by any stretch of the imagination to the high-profile theatrical release candidates.  

Amazon Studios, with production partner Morgan Creek, got hit for the mini-series “Dead Ringers” from more than one “helper” on Blu-ray; Hallmark got hit seven times, plus producing partners Larry Levinson Productions and Johnson Production Group got hit for five more (if you are counting, that’s 12 Hallmark films in one week); Netflix got whacked for a half-dozen series; and Paramount’s Scream VI had its first “helper” attack within hours of being streamed on Paramount+.

We could go on about theatrical catalog and all the little “helpers” on that side of the street, but that ship has sailed.  Those vast film libraries that were built from the 1930s to the launch of DVD in 1997 (the cut-off point for theatrical catalog and new theatrical) by the various “Hollywood” studios are now all in the public domain — when you don’t monitor and enforce your copyrights that’s exactly what happens.  

Sure, they still think they have copyright protection, but that’s an illusion that is not supported by the helter-skelter release activity taking place in the DVD marketplace these days.  

To that point, through the first four months of 2023, 3,978 theatrical catalog releases (sound era through 1996) arrived on DVD.  That tracks for a total of 12,000 new product offerings in that category alone for 2023 … the average pre-pandemic count was roughly 1,600 titles per year.

New theatrical launches are stuck in limbo — still nowhere near pre-pandemic levels. Mega-budget films that could change that dynamic go direct to streaming. And priceless studios assets — in the form of theatrical libraries — are sacked at a pace that would make a Visigoth blush.

Streaming has been nothing less than a dagger in the heart of studio assets. When will someone wake up and see the damage that has been done and take steps to correct it?

Ralph Tribbey is the publisher of The DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, a weekly newsletter that tracks physical media. Tribbey began his long career in entertainment in theatrical exhibition and later rose to VP of marketing for MGM Home Video. 

Gravitas Ventures Hires Danielle Gasher as Senior Director of Acquisitions

Gravitas Ventures, an Anthem Sports and Entertainment company, has hired Danielle Gasher as senior director of acquisitions.

Gasher will report to CEO Nolan Gallagher and will co-lead the acquisitions department with Bill Guentzler. Gasher and Guentzler will identify titles for the Gravitas Premiere label and ongoing slate of more than 250 films a year.

Danielle Gasher

The Gravitas Premiere label will release approximately four cast-driven, high production value films per year and release them wide theatrically with significant marketing support. The first title under the Premiere label, Mack & Rita starring Diane Keaton and directed by Katie Aselton, debuted exclusively in more than 1,500 theaters in the United States and Canada on Aug. 12.  

Before joining Gravitas, Gasher held the role of VP of International Sales at Voltage Pictures. While at Voltage, Gasher reported directly to president and COO Jonathan Deckter. She worked across various cast driven titles including Last Seen Alive, starring Gerard Butler and Jaimie Alexander; The Yacht, starring Frank Grillo, Ruby Rose and Patrick Schwarzenegger; and Per Tutta La Vita (For All Life) from the producers of Perfect Strangers, one of the most remade films of all time. While at Voltage, Screen International recognized Gasher in “Future Leaders 2021: Sales and Acquisitions Executives to Watch.”

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“I couldn’t be more thrilled to join a team as innovative, reputable and entrepreneurial as Gravitas,” Gasher said in a statement. “I look forward to bringing my years of sales experience to the acquisition side of the business, especially during such an exciting time for Gravitas with the recent launch of its theatrical label, Gravitas Premiere.”

“We are excited to add such a well rounded, well liked and results oriented executive as Danielle Gasher,” Gallagher, founder and CEO of Gravitas, said in a statement. “As a global distributor her expertise and relationships will be essential in our mission to find new audiences for our filmmakers.”

Prior to joining Voltage, Gasher worked on the sales team at the Canadian sales and production outfit Double Dutch International, where she worked across various territories and sold titles such as The Doorman, starring Ruby Rose and Jean Reno; The Virtuoso, with Anthony Hopkins, Anson Mount and Abbie Cornish; and Sometimes Always Never, with Bill Nighy, Sam Riley and Alice Lowe.

Lionsgate Motion Picture Group Names Horizon Media Agency of Record for Theatrical, Home Entertainment

Lionsgate’s Motion Picture Group has named Horizon Media its media agency of record for its theatrical and home entertainment business, the studio announced.

Horizon Media, the largest U.S. media agency according to AdAge Data Center 2022, will be responsible for developing and executing innovative, creative media strategies, planning, buying, data and analytics across all media channels, according to Lionsgate.
“Among the factors in making the decision, Lionsgate was impressed and persuaded by Horizon Media’s blu., the agency’s proprietary data platform, empowering their advanced analytical capabilities to target individuals, personalize messaging, and engage moviegoers based on more than 11,000 deterministic attributes, resulting in actionable intelligence across all media and marketing channel,” according to Lionsgate. 
“Horizon’s data-driven approach, coupled with their experience in theatrical and entertainment marketing as the driver behind many innovative and successful campaigns, made the difference for us,” Adam Fogelson, vice chair of Lionsgate’s Motion Picture Group, said in a statement.  

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“Lionsgate has a history of challenging convention — of cutting against industry norms — to distinguish themselves in an increasingly crowed entertainment industry,” said Karen Hunt, president, Western region, at Horizon Media, in a statement.  “Lionsgate has produced some iconic films and has an amazing slate ahead. We’re excited to start work with Adam and his entire team — putting our ‘Business is Personal’ approach to work.” 

Reports: HBO, HBO Max to Lay Off 70 as Cost-Cutting at Warner Bros. Discovery Continues

Warner Bros. Discovery is planning to cut 70 staffers at HBO and HBO Max, according to reports.

The newly formed congolmerate, created in April from the combination of Discovery and AT&T Inc.’s WarnerMedia, is undergoing cost-cutting as CEO David Zaslav moves on the plan to combine streaming and other operations.

The latest eliminated positions are primarily focused on reality content with HBO Max reality-TV unit head Sarah Aubrey moving to focus on Max original dramas, according to reports. The layoffs represent 14% of HBO chief content officer Casey Bloys’ staff, according to the reports.

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The move was not unexpected considering Discovery’s strong do-it-yourself reality-TV business led by HGTV and The Magnolia Network. 

Warner Bros. Discovery Aug. 4 officially announced plans to combine the Discovery+ and HBO Max subscription streaming platforms into a single service in the summer of 2023. 

Almost Half of Studios’ First-Run Shows in 2021 Were SVOD Releases

Original content is getting pushed toward SVOD. That’s according to Ampere Analysis, which says the five largest U.S. content distributors have increased the proportion of their original shows premiering online.

Disney and WarnerMedia led the way with a strategic shift several years ago, while Comcast and Discovery were later to the game, catching up in 2021, according to Ampere.

Discovery, in particular, has rapidly switched strategy, moving from having a minimal focus on VOD originals in 2019 to placing the greatest emphasis on streaming originals. In 2021, nearly half (48%) of its first-run commissions were for VOD platforms, primarily Discovery+.

Having entered the SVOD market early with CBS All Access, Paramount now lags its studio rivals with only one third of commissions going to VOD. Time and resources over the last two years has largely been spent readjusting content priorities among its cable assets post the 2019 Viacom-CBS merger, according to Ampere.

“Original content is crucial to the success of any SVOD service,” Fred Black, research manager at Ampere Analysis, said in a statement. “And alongside increasing the volume of streaming originals, the studios are using a strategy centered on adapting existing IP, spin-offs, and reboots in their efforts to migrate loyal cable and movie audiences to the new ecosystem. Franchise character spin-offs have proved enormously successful for Disney+, with titles such as ‘The Mandalorian’ and Marvel series like ‘Loki’ and ‘Wandavision’ boosting the service’s early audience growth.

“The other studios have taken note; spin-offs from Food Network cooking competition ‘Chopped’ and TLC stalwart ’90 Day Fiancé’ are increasingly housed on Discovery+, and while Paramount Network’s blockbuster hit ‘Yellowstone’ is currently streaming on Peacock due to a preceding deal, the after-show reaction series and dramatic spin-offs will be found on Paramount+.

“Reboots are another way to capture audiences from elsewhere and head up HBO Max’s slate with series like ‘And Just Like That …’ and ‘Pretty Little Liars.’ Don’t forget the power of kids content in the streaming game too; Peacock is betting heavily on Dreamworks Animation’s library of IP for new animated series.

“All of this poses a problem for incumbents like Netflix and Amazon, which find themselves needing to build out franchises at an accelerated rate to compete, through a combination of buying up existing IP like ‘Lord of the Rings,’ the Roald Dahl books, or ‘The Witcher,’ as well as leveraging existing hits like Amazon’s ‘The Boys’ or Netflix’s ‘Selling Sunset’ to the maximum extent through multiple spin-off series to keep pace.”

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Electric Entertainment Promotes Christina Keller to VP of Finance

Electric Entertainment, the Los Angeles based production, distribution and post-production company headed by producer Dean Devlin, has announced the promotion of Christina Keller to the newly created position of VP of finance.

She will be working closely with CFO Jeff Gonzalez on fostering Electric’s banking relationships and preparing and reviewing financing documents and forecasts.

Prior to becoming VP of finance, Christina was controller for the company. She has been with Electric for more than 12 years.

“Christina has shown immense dedication, ingenuity and acumen in achieving our far-reaching goals at Electric,” Gonzalez said in a statement. “She has become an undisputed asset within not just the accounting department, but the company as a whole. I am excited to see her  move into this newly created and well-deserved role.”

As the controller for Electric Entertainment, Keller oversaw the entirety of the accounting department, maintained loan compliance, created GAAP basis financial statements, set up accounting controls, managed entity creation and dissolution, handled post-production accounting, and liaised with the company CPA for annual tax return filings. In addition to these duties, she handled all matters relating to human resources and payroll. She managed both international and domestic tax credit filings. 

Prior to joining Electric in 2010, Keller obtained her CPA license and worked with tax firm Talley & Company, reviewing corporate and individual multi-state income tax returns. 

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Electric Entertainment is an independent studio headed by veteran producer Devlin along with his partners Marc Roskin and Rachel Olschan-Wilson. Electric Entertainment also houses acquisitions and sales divisions, with domestic sales headed up by Steve Saltman and the international division headed by Sonia Mehandjiyska. Electric also has a satellite office located in Vancouver, Canada.

Among Electric’s television series are “The Librarians” and “Leverage,” which ran for four and five seasons respectively on TNT; “The Outpost,” which premiered its fourth season on The CW in 2021; and “Almost Paradise,” which is currently streaming on IMDb TV after having premiered on WGN America. Season two of “Almost Paradise” begins shooting this summer. Electric’s new series “The Ark” begins shooting this spring for the Syfy channel. Electric’s spin-off continuation of “Leverage,” “Leverage: Redemption,” is currently streaming in the United States and the United Kingdom on Amazon’s IMDb TV, as one of the platform’s first original programs. Season two of “Leverage: Redemption” begins shooting this spring.

Electric’s feature films have included Bad Samaritan, starring David Tennant and Robert Sheehan; Say My Name, starring Lisa Brenner and Nick Blood; the  documentary Who Killed the Electric Car?; and most recently The Deal, starring Sumalee Montano and Emma Fischer. Electric also acquires, distributes and sells worldwide rights to Electric’s produced and acquired content, as well as theatrical films from around the world, including Blood on the Crown, starring Harvey Keitel and Malcolm McDowell; Heavy, starring Sophie Turner and Daniel Zovatto; Rob Reiner’s historical biopic LBJ, starring Woody Harrelson; and Book of Love, starring Jessica Biel and Jason Sudeikis. The company’s domestic distribution division, headed by Steve Saltman, is a full-service operation serving all significant outlets with various rights to films and series including TVOD, EST, AVOD, SVOD, PTV, Linear Basic Cable and Broadcast.

Universal’s Kathleen Gallagher Promoted From Home Entertainment to Theatrical

Universal has promoted Kathleen Gallagher — a key executive with Universal Pictures Home Entertainment and a four time honoree in Media Play News’ annual Women in Home Entertainment — to EVP and general sales manager of North American theatrical distribution.

She will report to Universal president of domestic theatrical distribution Jim Orr.

In her new role, Gallagher will head up the sales teams in the U.S. and Canada, creating strategies that optimize theatrical performance for all Universal titles. She will also further relationships with exhibition, as well as partner closely with key stakeholders across International Distribution, Home Entertainment and Marketing.

“Kathleen is a trusted distribution and sales executive who’s innovative strategies have benefited Universal for more than 20 years,” Orr said in a statement. “She brings to this position a wealth of knowledge and experience across the industry that will benefit us greatly.  I look forward to partnering with her as we build strategies that will continue to optimize Universal’s theatrical performance across North America.”

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Gallagher was previously EVP of global physical home entertainment at Universal Pictures Home Entertainment. It was a position she assumed in 2020 in which she was charged with leading Universal Pictures Home Entertainment’s physical home entertainment operations worldwide, overseeing the company’s North American joint distribution venture Studio Distribution Services (SDS) with WarnerMedia, as well as a diverse slate of licensing and distribution partnerships around the world with partners including WarnerMedia, Sony Pictures Entertainment and Paramount Pictures.