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Fox Int’l revamps staff

Twentieth Century Fox Intl. Corp. is moving much of its personnel around the global chessboard in a series of promotions and transfers.

Fox Intl. president Walter Senior said Wednesday the restructuring was triggered both by the hiring of Scott Neeson as his international marketing VP and by his desire to promote from within and systematically move people to fresh territories.

‘Opportunity to grow’

“I’m keen to give people the opportunity to grow, moving them to bigger and more complicated territories, rather than reshaping from outside,” he said.

Fox Intl. has gradually shed more than 150 staffers worldwide as part of what Senior describes as a “three-year metamorphosis into a high-powered, efficient distribution machine.”

Despite the slowdown in the studio’s release pipeline, Senior rules out more personnel cuts. “Any further trimming would make us ineffective when we get a full slate,” he said.

Mystery slot

The exec doesn’t yet know what he will have on his 1994 slate, but he’s bullish about the final version of Philip Kaufman’s “Rising Sun” and the Macaulay Culkin-toplined thriller “The Good Son” (both slated for the fall overseas), plus the Robin Williams vehicle “Mrs. Doubtfire” (which Senior says he hasn’t decided whether to put out at Christmas, in line with domestic release).

The catalyst for the current round of exec shuffles and new hires was the decision by David Gross not to renew his contract as Fox Intl. marketing and distribution VP.

All the moves are evolving over the next few weeks:

Bob Girard segues from Fox rep in Japan to general manager of the Hoyts/Fox/Columbia TriStar distrib co-venture in Australia. He replaces Neeson, who relocates to L.A.

Paul Hanneman is named as Fox general manager in Japan, succeeding 36-year studio vet Noriyoshi Matsumoto, who is retiring. Hanneman previously was general manager of Fox in South Korea.

More integration

Michael Kim becomes general manager in Korea, supervising both Fox’ theatrical and homevideo operations. He held the same post at FoxVideo in Korea. Senior says he’d like to do more integrating of the theatrical and vid managements, but notes: “It depends on finding the right person (adept in) both disciplines.”

Tomas Jegeus returns to his native Sweden as adpub manager for Columbia TriStar, which is taking over the distribution of Fox films from Svensk Filmindustri after “Hot Shots! Part Deux.”

Ron Collins fills Jegeus’ slot as director of advertising and promotions at Fox U.K. Collins was home office rep for Fox in Indonesia.

Hans Fraikin moves from interim trainee in Korea to home office rep in Indonesia.

Geoffrey Bossiere becomes an international trainee, to be posted initially in Germany for about six weeks, then in Japan. He was manager of special projects for the international theatrical finance department and for Fox Video’s marketing department in L.A.

Senior lauds Paul Hanneman, a former investment broker in San Francisco who rose in three years from Fox trainee to boss of Korea and now Japan, as typical of the breed of smart, young aggressive exex he wants to nurture.

In the quest for efficiency, Senior says he’s prepared to make more distrib alliances, as Fox has with Columbia TriStar in such markets as Sweden and Belgium.

He says he’s willing to contemplate co-ventures with indie distribs in either small or large territories, citing Buena Vista Intl.’s partnership with France’s Gaumont as a model.

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