UPDATED: Megan Colligan is out as head of worldwide marketing and distribution at Paramount Pictures, Variety has learned. The move comes as newly installed studio chief Jim Gianopulos continues to shake up the top executive ranks at the troubled company in the wake of a series of film flops such as “Ghost in the Shell” and “Baywatch.” Paramount’s latest bomb, “Suburbicon,” a dark satire from George Clooney, debuted to a dreadful $2.8 million. It has eked out $5.1 million in two weeks of release. In September, Gianopulos ousted Marc Evans, the motion picture group president, and replaced him with Wyck Godfrey, the producer of “The Fault in Our Stars” and “Twilight.”
In a memo to staff, Colligan thanked her colleagues for their “hard work, inspired talents and true professionalism.” She went on to write, “You are a team in every sense of the word. You never give up and never give in, no matter how great the challenge.”
It is unclear who will replace Colligan. At one point there were rumors that Josh Greenstein, the marketing chief at Sony and a former Paramount executive, might return to the lot, but he instead re-upped his contract. In the interim, Rebecca Mall, Peter Giannascoli, and Kyle Davies will oversee domestic marketing and distribution operations. Mary Daily and Mark Viane will supervise international activities.
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“We are lucky to have an incredibly experienced and talented team here, all of whom I am confident will be able to step in and market and distribute our movies in a smart, strategic, and coordinated manner,” Gianopulos wrote in a note to staff.
Colligan has held her current job since 2014, having previously served as co-president of domestic marketing and distribution. She oversaw the campaigns for Paramount’s major franchises, a group that includes “Mission: Impossible,” “Transformers,” and “Star Trek,” and had particular success with Oscar contenders such as “The Wolf of Wall Street” and “Fences,” powering them to awards glory and strong box office results.
Colligan previously worked for Paramount’s speciality division, Paramount Vantage, and served as vice president at Fox Searchlight, working on campaigns that included “Sideways,” “Bend It Like Beckham,” and “Napoleon Dynamite.” Colligan joined Fox Searchlight from Fenton Communications.
A spokesman for Paramount could not immediately be reached for comment.