Lionsgate Elevates Thomas Hughes to EVP Worldwide Digital Distribution

Lionsgate upped Thomas Hughes to exec VP of worldwide digital distribution, a promotion the studio said underscores the growth in its licensing business to digital and on-demand providers.

Hughes, previously SVP of worldwide digital, played a key role in the successful launch of the first two installments of the “Hunger Games” franchise on digital and VOD platforms, according to Lionsgate. He also led the company’s foray into new windowing strategies, including the day-and-date theatrical/VOD releases of the films “Arbitrage” and “Margin Call.”

Hughes will continue to report to Jim Packer, Lionsgate president of worldwide TV and digital distribution, and will work closely with Lionsgate international TV exec Peter Iacono.

“Our licensing of film and television content to digital and on demand platforms around the world is an area of explosive growth, and Thomas will help spearhead our team’s initiatives in capitalizing on emerging opportunities throughout the global marketplace,” Packer said.

Hughes oversees sales and distribution for all of Lionsgate’s businesses in the on-demand and digital space, including deals with pay-TV providers more than 25 digital retailers including Apple iTunes, Amazon.com and Microsoft Xbox. Last year Hughes played an instrumental role in Lionsgate becoming the first outside studio to license content to Comcast as part of the MSO’s entry into the electronic sell-through space.

The exec joined Lionsgate in March 2011 after serving as VP of worldwide digital at MGM for three years.

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