You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Brad Grey Re-Ups at Paramount to 2020 (EXCLUSIVE)

Paramount Pictures’ parent company Viacom Inc. has quietly extended the contract of the studio’s Chairman and CEO Brad Grey for five more years until early 2020, according to insiders.

Grey, who has been in charge of Paramount for a decade, has vowed to step up production and improve the performance of the studio, which has lagged behind its rivals in market share over the last three years as it has slashed costs and reduced the amount of movies it releases to save money.

Paramount has released the fewest number of titles among the six major studios with only 10 so far this year — and no films at all during the second quarter — and currently ranks fifth in domestic box office with $563 million, trailing Universal, Disney, Warner Bros. and Fox.

“Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation” is its top performer at $194 million.

Grey, 57, has said he wants to bolster the Paramount slate by increasing the number of releases to 15 and focusing on its franchises, which in addition to “Mission Impossible,” include “Star Trek,” “Transformers,” “GI Joe,” “SpongeBob Squarepants” and “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.” Earlier this year, he replaced studio president Adam Goodman with Marc Evans in hopes of reinvigorating the studio’s slate.

Grey’s contract extension, signed several months ago, comes at time when Viacom’s other business units — including its cable channels MTV, Nickelodeon and Comedy Central — are also struggling, and the health of its 92-year-old chairman Sumner Redstone is raising serious questions about the media conglomerate’s fate and future leadership. Shares have fallen 37% this year amid a 14% decline in TV ratings, the departures of Jon Stewart from “The Daily Show” and Steven Colbert from “The Colbert Report,” and the lack of a breakout hit movie.

Despite the struggles and Wall Street’s concerns, Grey has managed to maintain strong ties to Viacom CEO Philippe Dauman and Redstone, and has cultivated relationships with top talent such as JJ Abrams, Michael Bay, Jerry Bruckheimer, Lorenzo di Bonaventura, Mary Parent and Martin Scorsese along with David Ellison, who runs the studio’s co-financing partner Skydance.

Two years ago, Paramount also returned to active TV development and production under Amy Powell.

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • In ‘Motherless Brooklyn,’ Edward Norton Takes

    In ‘Motherless Brooklyn,’ Edward Norton Takes on Timeless Power Struggles

    In Edward Norton’s “Motherless Brooklyn,” the ‘50s-set New York noir detective story he produced, directed, wrote and stars in, politics are never far from the surface. But they’re not the obvious parallels to any racist autocrats from New York of modern times, but instead focus on more timeless politics – the way disabled people and [...]

  • 'Joker' Cinematographer Lawrence Sher Wins at

    'Joker' Cinematographer Lawrence Sher Wins at EnergaCamerimage Film Festival

    “Joker” cinematographer Lawrence Sher’s bid, along with director Todd Phillips, to try something “perhaps even a bit artful” won big Saturday in Torun, Poland as he took the top prize at the EnergaCamerimage Intl. Film Festival. The Golden Frog for cinematography, along with the audience prize, went to his work filming Joaquin Phoenix in the [...]

  • Roberto Schaefer

    Netflix Image Enhancement Rules Take Cinematographers by Surprise

    A Netflix requirement that cinematographers capture films in HDR, or high dynamic range, has taken many by surprise, filmmakers say, but those at the 27th EnergaCamerimage festival in Poland seem increasingly accepting of the change. DP Roberto Schaefer, whose “Red Sea Diving Resort” screened at the cinematography fest in the historic city of Torun, said [...]

  • Lech Majewski and Josh Hartnett

    Lech Majewski on ‘Valley of the Gods,’ Navaho Mythology, Josh Hartnett, Keir Dullea

    TORUN, Poland – In his latest work, “The Valley of the Gods,” director Lech Majewski explores the ancient mythology of a downtrodden people and the absurd wealth of the world’s richest man in a surreal vision of modern America. The film screened at the EnergaCamerimage Intl. Film Festival as part of special showcase honoring Majewski, [...]

  • The Red Sea Diving Resort

    Cinematographer Roberto Schaefer on Gideon Raff's Thriller ‘The Red Sea Diving Resort’

    TORUN, Poland – While Gideon Raff’s Netflix thriller “The Red Sea Diving Resort” shot largely in South Africa and Namibia, the project was a welcomed opportunity for cinematographer Roberto Schaefer due to his own memorable travels through Ethiopia. The film, which screened in the EnergaCamerimage Intl. Film Festival’s Contemporary World Cinema section, is loosely based [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content