PUSAN, South Korea — Jennifer Muhn has quit as head of CJ Intl., the foreign sales division of Korea’s leading film conglom, effective immediately.
News emerged on the eve of the Pusan Film Festival’s expanding market and only three weeks before CJ takes its bulging slate of pictures to the AFM in Santa Monica.
Muhn was appointed head of sales just three months ago, when CJ bought out rival Cinema Service’s 70-title library and folded Cinema Service’s sales operation, previously headed by Muhn, into its own.
Muhn said she will pursue other interests. “I really need a break after eight years in the international side of the business,” she told Daily Variety. “I’m going to take a long holiday and have some fun. I’d like to return to the film business after that, but right now I have no firm plans.”
CJ has not yet announced a successor, but at the upcoming events, sales are likely to be spearheaded by Josh Lee, another Cinema Service alumni, and Kini Kim, who has risen through the ranks at CJ.
“My departure allows Josh and Kini the chance to show what they are made of,” Muhn said.
Muhn insisted she was not fired and that the decision was her own. But her departure comes after the latest bout of reshuffling within CJ, often regarded as a tough regime. The giant corporation, which has its origins in foods and catering, expects its entertainment division to dominate the local movie industry.
Despite the absorption of Cinema Service and the acquisition of the Primus exhibition chain two years ago, CJ has been challenged by exhibitor Showbox, which is rapidly expanded into distribution, production finance and international sales.