Disney announced a big reorganization last month to tighten its focus on streaming. Currently, the company is continuing to adjust the lines of reporting at its TV unit.
Gary Marsh, who has run the Disney Channel and its siblings for the past 9 years, will now supervise Disney-branded content that the TV unit creates for networks and streaming services, including Disney+. Courteney Monroe, who was previously the president of the National Geographic TV network, now heads content for that brand, reporting directly to Peter Rice, the chairman of Disney’s television division.
Other senior programming executives, including TV studios chief Dana Walden, ABC News president James Goldston and FX chairman John Landgraf, CEO of FX continue in their roles, although with more control over approving shows, particularly for the company’s streaming services.
"This is a major change to our legacy TV structure." Rice said in a memo on Tuesday, " This reorganization is an opportunity for us to fully focus on what we do best, making great programming for viewers wherever they choose to watch their favorite shows."
The moves were sparked by a reorganization last month designed to put streaming at the center of Disney’s operations. Chief Executive Officer Bob Chapek announced the creation of a new entity called Media & Entertainment Distribution, which will handle the business affairs for the company’s array of TV channels, film and TV studios, and streaming services. Kareem Daniel, who previously led consumer products within the theme-park division, took over distribution for the Disney+, ESPN+ and Hulu streaming services.
In this latest changes, Rice said that his content creation unit will now be called Disney General Entertainment Content.
Disney's online platforms—Disney+, Hulu, and ESPN+—have been Disney's main bright spot during the pandemic. Due to the coronavirus, Disney had to close its theme parks, and its movie business was also greatly affected. Movie audiences were locked at their homes by the virus and kept away from theaters. And Disney’s cable network, once Disney’s most profitable business, continues to lose subscribers.
Before joining Disney, Rice and Walden were both senior executives of Fox. And now, Rice has gained control of most of Disney's TV business. Disney put Rice in charge of its TV studio, cable network and news department. Walden oversees TV studios and ABC Entertainment.
Prior to this, Disney also made some other personnel changes. The company's ESPN sports channel eliminated about 500 positions last week and announced the departure of two senior executives on Monday.
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