Tolmach steps down to launch production company

In a major reshuffle on the Sony lot, Columbia Pictures president Matt Tolmach has stepped down to launch a new production company.

Sony announced Friday that Tolmach has also become a producer on the next Spider-Man pic while Doug Belgrad has been promoted to sole president of Columbia Pictures.

Belgrad has tapped Hannah Minghella as president of production for Columbia Pictures.

The moves were announced by Michael Lynton, Chairman and CEO of Sony Pictures Entertainment and Amy Pascal, Co-Chairman.

“I couldn’t be happier for or prouder of Matt, Doug and Hannah,” Pascal said. “Matt and I have worked together for over 15 years. Anyone who knows him knows he has been talking about this for a long time.”

Tolmach has signed a three-year producing deal with Sony and will begin the transition to that role during November. Studio also said he’ll begin working in December with Laura Ziskin and Avi Arad as a producer on the set of the the fourth “Spider-Man.”

“This move has been a dream of mine and something I’ve been discussing with Michael, Amy and Doug for more than a year now,” Tolmach said in a statement.

Minghella’s worked as president of production of Sony Pictures Animation since 2008 and oversaw “Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs.” She joined Sony in 2005 as a director of creative affairs working in the office of the chairman of the Motion Picture Group under Pascal and worked with Belgrad on several projects, including “Casino Royale.”

The announcement noted that Tolmach and Belgrad have shared the role of president of Columbia Pictures since 2008. They began guiding the label as a team in 2003 and have overseen “2012,” “The Da Vinci Code,” “Angels & Demons,” “The Pursuit of Happyness,” “Superbad,” “Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby,” ” Step Brothers” and “Pineapple Express.”

Sony noted that its best-performing pics this year have included “The Karate Kid,” “Grown Ups,” “Salt” and “The Social Network.” Notable franchises in the production pipeline include “Spider-Man 4,” “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo,” “Men in Black 3,” “Karate Kid 2,” “Total Recall” and a new “Ghostbusters.”

Read the press release on Boffo

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