As uncertainty continues to riddle the box office and theme parks alike, the Walt Disney Company is implementing one of its largest-ever internal restructurings, all in an effort to place more focus on the world of streaming video. The company said in a statement Monday afternoon it intends to combine all of its entertainment businesses into a singular organization. Instead of acting as standalone businesses, the company's movie studios, sports content providers, entertainment group, and direct-to-consumer products (Disney+, Hulu, and ESPN+) now reside under the same umbrella.
In the statement, Disney chief Bob Chapek announced Disney publishing and consumer products head Kareem Daniel has been promoted to oversee the entire new media and entertainment group. Ultimately, all distribution, sales, and advertising of film and domestic television will fall under Daniels' purview.
No changes have been made to the leadership with this restructuring, meaning Alan Horn and Alan Bergman still oversee the company's studios, Rebecca Campbell will continue to lead the charge on direct-to-consumer products, and Peter Rice will head the Mouse's general entertainment group, which includes both television studios and channels such as 20th Television, ABC Signature, all Disney Channels, Freeform, and FX. Even though Daniel serves as the head of the new entertainment group, all of the aforementioned executives will report directly to Chapek.
With the restructuring taking place immediately, Chapek says the company will continue its foray into streaming content, and these moves should be something that allows them to put more focus on Disney+, Hulu, and ESPN+.
"Given the incredible success of Disney+ and our plans to accelerate our direct-to-consumer business, we are strategically positioning our Company to more effectively support our growth strategy and increase shareholder value," Chapek said. "Managing content creation distinct from distribution will allow us to be more effective and nimble in making the content consumers want most, delivered in the way they prefer to consume it."
As the company continues to tweaks its content delivery systems moving forward, it's expected Daniel will be the one making the biggest decisions in regards to theatrical and streaming schedules — no small feat for any as the box office continues to try making its way through a post-COVID world.
"Kareem is an exceptionally talented, innovative and forward-looking leader, with a strong track record for developing and implementing successful global content distribution and commercialization strategies," Chapek added.
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