Gargotta upped to head of creative advertising

Sony Pictures Entertainment continued its overhaul of the studio’s marketing department.

Two weeks after upping Valerie Van Galder and Marc Weinstock to shared posts as co-presidents of worldwide theatrical marketing, the studio promoted Tommy Gargotta to prexy of worldwide creative advertising.

Josh Goldstine, who was head of creative advertising for the studio, is segueing to a senior creative exec post, where he will focus on the campaigns of upcoming Columbia Pictures films.

Goldstine, a 17-year veteran of the studio, played a part in one of the department’s most inglorious moments. In 2001, he was reprimanded and suspended for 30 days without pay by SPE for his role in the creation of a fake film critic, whose blurbs were used to promote Col films.

Still, Goldstine continued to rise at the studio, where he became the go-to marketing exec for such talent as Will Smith and Sam Raimi. He was promoted to senior exec VP of marketing one year after the scandal and prexy of creative advertising in 2003.

Goldstine will cease running the department day to day, with Gargotta taking up those duties. Gargotta, most recently senior exec VP of worldwide creative advertising, will guide the creative marketing team in the development of posters, commercials, trailers, in-theater standees and other collateral marketing material to launch all films released by Columbia and Sony Pictures Animation.

Gargotta will report to and work closely with Van Galder and Weinstock.

Gargotta has developed ad campaigns for such high-profile Columbia and SPA releases as “Casino Royale,” “The Da Vinci Code” and “Open Season.”

Weinstock lauded Gargotta as “a master marketer who is respected and admired by filmmakers and Sony executives.”

Gargotta, who joined the studio in 2001 as senior VP of creative advertising, will begin working on campaigns for “Quantum of Solace,” “Angels & Demons” and “2012.”

In his new post, Goldstine will focus on a small number of high-profile films each year and continue to report to Jeff Blake, chairman of worldwide marketing and distribution. Goldstine’s first two projects are the Smith starrer “Seven Pounds” and Roland Emmerich thriller “2012.”

“From ‘Bad Boys’ to ‘Hancock,’ Josh and I have worked together on eight of my movies at Sony, and he has consistently delivered,” said Smith. “Josh is the best at what he does, and I look forward to collaborating on ‘Seven Pounds.'”

Raimi, who worked with Goldstine on the three “Spider-Man” campaigns concurred. “Josh is an absolutely brilliant marketer,” Raimi said. “His creative leadership on the ‘Spider-Man’ campaigns was essential to our success.”

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