1960Michael Lynton is born on Jan. 1 in London to Mark Lynton, a German immigrant and businessman, and Marion, a psychologist. 1963 Family moves to the United States. 1969 Lynton clan heads to Holland, where the elder Lynton launches the family business Hunter Douglas, a leading maker of window coverings. 1975 Attends the International School of the Hague. 1977 Moves back to the U.S. and transfers to Phillips Exeter Academy, a boarding school in New Hampshire. 1978 Graduates from Exeter and enters Harvard College, living at Kirkland House, an undergraduate residence known as a popular hangout for Harvard athletes. Between classes, enjoys playing rugby and occasionally works at the Loeb Theater. 1982 Upon graduation from Harvard with a BA, heads to Wall Street, where he finds work as an investment banker for Credit Suisse First Boston, handling mergers and acquisitions. Frequently travels between New York, London and Melbourne. 1985 Realizes he does not want to be a Wall Street banker and decides to go back to Harvard to attend the Business School along with his sister, Lili. 1987 Upon obtaining an MBA from Harvard, is recruited by Disney to launch and expand Disney Publishing. Displays his business acumen by purchasing Hyperion’s first animated-movie book, “The Little Mermaid,” which ends up on the N.Y. Times bestseller list. 1989 Launches two imprints for children’s books, Disney Press and Hyperion Books for Children, as well as Hyperion Press, an adult trade house. He also delves into magazines with the launch of Disney Adventures while also acquiring Discover and Family Fun. 1992 Is upped to the position of president of Hollywood Pictures, a division of the Walt Disney Co. Buys the rights to Nicholas Evans’ novel “The Horse Whisperer” for $3 million. 1993 Marries Jamie Alter on Sept. 11. 1995 Hits the jackpot when three of his releases for that year — “The Santa Claus,” “While You Were Sleeping” and “Crimson Tide” — gross more than $250 million domestic. Produces “The Rock” and “Mr. Holland’s Opus,” which prove profitable. 1996 After the shutting down of Hollywood Pictures, Lynton heads back to the publishing field as chairman-CEO of Pearson’s Penguin Group, where he will oversee the acquisition and integration of Putnam Inc. into the corporate fold and extend the Penguin brand to music and the Internet. 1998 The Lynton family creates the Mark Lynton History Prize as part of the Lukas Prize Project to pay homage to the late Mark Lynton, who was an avid reader of history. 2000 Leaves the publishing world to become president of AOL Intl. as well as CEO of AOL Europe. 2004 Joins Sony Pictures as chairman and CEO of Sony Pictures Entertainment in January. 2006 Announces Amy Pascal’s five-year contract and appointment to the position of co-chairman of Sony Pictures Entertainment. 2007 Receives the Motion Picture Showmanship award along with Amy Pascal at the ICG Publicists’ annual luncheon. Sources: Variety, New York Times, L.A. Weekly, SonyPictures.com, Hollywood.com; JewishVirtualLibrary.org; Wikipedia.org; Harvard.edu; Columbia.edu
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