Sony Pictures Promotes Andrew Gumpert to Top Dealmaking Post

Sony Pictures Entertainment has promoted veteran executive Andrew Gumpert to the newly created post of president of worldwide business affairs and operations for the motion picture group.

Tom Rothman, who ascended to the chairmanship of the motion picture group in February as Amy Pascal’s replacement, made the announcement Tuesday.

Gumpert previously served in a similar capacity for Columbia Pictures. Tuesday’s promotion adds the studio’s other divisions — Screen Gems, Sony Animation, TriStar — to his portfolio. He will work closely with Motion Picture Group President Doug Belgrad on day-to-day business operations and business affairs strategies.

“Gump is an incredible executive and has compiled a terrific team,” Rothman said in a statement. “He is smart and dedicated and creative and honest. He has Doug’s and my full confidence, as does the outstanding team he supervises.”

Sony has been attempting to recover for the past year from the massive cyberhack that crippled the studio for weeks. Its best performer this year has been “Hotel Transylvania 2,” which has topped $400 million worldwide. “Spectre,” which bowed Nov. 6, has also performed well and is expected to top “Transylvania” soon.

Gumpert will also remain directly involved with high-level strategic planning, including overseeing with CFO Stefan Litt the studio’s relationships with outside financing partners Lonestar Capital and Village Roadshow.

He will also oversee the business affairs and strategic operations for Columbia Live Stage, the studio’s theatrical group. That group is currently developing the musical “Groundhog Day,” based on the 1993 Columbia Pictures motion picture, with Tim Minchin, Matthew Warchus, Scott Rudin and Danny Rubin, who was a writer on the original feature film and is writing the book for the show.

As part of the promotion, the senior business affairs executive for each motion picture group production division will now report to Gumpert. Sony spelled out the business affairs team for each division:

— At Columbia, Michael Marshall has been promoted to head of business affairs and will serve as exec VP of business affairs and administration, working closely with senior vice presidents Lumumba Mosquera and Mark Wyman;

— At TriStar, Brian Burkin has been promoted to exec VP, head of business affairs;

— At Sony Pictures Animation, former Mattel exec Jeffrey Korchek has been hired as exec VP of business affairs and strategy. Korchek will supervise Kym Wulfe, who is being promoted to senior VP of business affairs. Ronni Coulter, who has overseen business affairs for the animation studio for more than nine years, will be retiring.

— At Screen Gems, vice president of business affairs Carol Smithson will head business affairs and continue to work closely with exec VP and General Manager Pam Kunath;

— Laine Kline has joined the studio as exec VP of business affairs for international productions. Kline joins the studio from Fox, where he was head of business affairs at Fox International Productions.

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