Domestic marketing president quits

Warner Bros. prexy of domestic marketing Dawn Taubin has ankled after nearly 20 years at the studio.

Her departure comes a little over a week after Jeff Robinov took oversight of marketing and distribution as part of a studio restructuring that left Taubin reporting to him, instead of Warner prexy-COO Alan Horn.

Taubin was offered to stay on in a non-theatrical senior marketing post, but she declined, according to Warners chair-CEO Barry Meyer

In the restructuring, Robinov was upped from prexy of production to prexy of the newly formed Warner Bros. Pictures Group. Kevin McCormick has stepped into Robinov’s old post.

Relations between Robinov and Taubin, once close, grew strained with the release of Bryan Singer’s “Superman Returns.” Singer’s camp took issue with the marketing of the film, although Singer himself had some degree of control over marketing materials.

When Horn and Meyer gave Robinov dominion over marketing and distribution in November, many wondered about Taubin’s fate.

The widely respected exec has guided domestic marketing during some of the studio’s most profitable years. She has overseen campaigns for the “Harry Potter” pics, the most successful franchise in film history.

Warners had a rocky time in the summer of 2006, with “Poseidon” along with “Superman,” but the studio quickly rebounded. Taubin was a key part of that effort, shaping campaigns for “Happy Feet” and “The Departed,” which went on to win four Oscars, including best picture.

And last year, she was credited for helping to turn “300″ into a surprise blockbuster. She also oversaw the campaign for “I Am Legend,” the most successful release of the holiday season.

But the rift between her and Robinov never really healed.

Horn, until this month her boss, lauded Taubin as “phenomenally smart” and classy upon her departure.

“I wish her all the best as she continues her career, and I will miss her,” he said in a statement.

And Taubin said she felt very fortunate for her long stint at the studio “and to end my time here with our most successful year ever.”

It’s not clear who will fill her post. The studio would only say that no decisions have been made.

Sue Kroll heads international marketing for Warners.

Taubin was elevated to her current post in November 2001.

Taubin joined the studio as VP of publicity in 1989, adding advertising responsibilities to her portfolio in 1993. Named senior VP of advertising and publicity three years later, she was bumped up to exec VP of marketing in 1999.

Exec came to the studio from MGM, where she was VP of publicity. She joined the Lion in 1985 after stints at Warner Amex Cable Communications and National Amusements.

(Pamela McClintock contributed to this report.)

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