Rosenthal will also continue as executive chair. Essex will be transitioning to an advisory role by the end of the year. She made the announcement about the changes to the Tribeca staff on Tuesday.
Rosenthal launched the Tribeca Film Festival in 2002 with Robert De Niro and Craig Hatkoff in the wake of the 9/11 terrorist attacks on New York City. Until Essex came on early last year, she had been the only CEO of the company, which began as a festival organizer to help the recovery of lower Manhattan and promote New York as a filmmaking center.
Essex was the former vice chair and founding CEO of the ad agency Droga5. The announcement did not indicate whether he’s taking another job elsewhere.
The festival will hold its 17th iteration from April 18 to April 29 in New York City. The departure of Essex comes three years after Tribeca Enterprises sold 50% of itself to Madison Square Garden Company.
Here’s the memo that went out to the staff:
Dear Team Tribeca,
Bob and I wanted to let you all know that Andrew Essex is leaving his position as CEO of Tribeca Enterprises and, starting today, will transition into an advisor role. I will serve as interim CEO, and continue as executive chair of Tribeca.
For the past 18 months, Andrew has worked with me and our senior leadership to lead our amazingly talented Tribeca team charged with overseeing the business side of our operations. Partnerships has grown exponentially and our award-winning Tribeca Studios content business has continued to thrive. Andrew has brought a new perspective, diligence and organizational expertise to the Company. I am grateful for his dedication to Tribeca and for the dedication of our strong partnership and business teams, which have played an integral part in the success of Tribeca over the years.
Paula Weinstein and I will continue to oversee the creative areas and programming of Tribeca, providing exceptional programs for storytellers and audiences alike. Tribeca TV Festival successfully launched to sold-out audiences, trended on Twitter, live streamed on Facebook and featured everyone from Oprah and Trevor Noah to the cast of Will & Grace, who hosted a surprise premiere of their show. We could not have met that success without each and every one of you.
Over the last few years, Tribeca Studios has been one of the top creators of original storytelling for brands. The team has produced work with partners such as Dick’s Sporting Goods, Heineken, Prudential, Bai, TUMI, and more. The work from Tribeca Studios is important to us in an age where everything is content but good stories are paramount.
As we turn our attention to the 2018 Tribeca Film Festival and look to build on last year’s film, TV, talks, online work and gaming successes, I know our incredible team will again deliver the best Festival program and experience.
Please join me in thanking Andrew. We look forward to continuing to work with him as an advisor.