Paramount Pictures has named longtime Disney executive Dan Cohen the new president of worldwide television licensing, Variety has learned.
In his new role, Cohen will oversee the global licensing and distribution of all Paramount films, television series and other content across multiple platforms including mobile, pay television, broadcast, cable and SVOD as well as emerging digital arenas. He will lead the television licensing teams in setting strategy and guiding the teams in their negotiations across the global marketplace and finding strategic distribution opportunities. In this new role, he will report to Andrew Gumpert, Paramount’s chief operating officer.
“I’m thrilled to bring aboard a seasoned executive like Dan, who was the force behind some of the most important pay-tv licensing deals in our industry,” Gumpert said. “He has a proven track record of growing the business while discovering the ideal distribution platforms for content. I look forward to working with him to maximize our revenue opportunities for Paramount’s films, series and catalogs.”
Cohen previously spent 20 years at Disney/ABC where he most recently served as executive vice president of pay television and digital sales for home entertainment and television distribution for The Walt Disney Studios, where he distributed catalog and properties including Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Lucasfilm, ABC and Disney Channel to businesses around the globe.
While at Disney/ABC, Cohen secured two significant pay television deals – Netflix in 2012 and Starz in 1999 – negotiating exclusive, multi-year deals and licensing agreements. He also contributed to the launch of the studio’s subscription VOD service and Disney Family Movies, and led negotiations with iTunes, Amazon, Google, Walmart’s VUDU and Microsoft for the studio’s cloud-based digital movie service, Disney Movies Anywhere.
“The television licensing business is constantly evolving, with new content platforms emerging,” Cohen said. “I’m privileged to help Andrew and the incredibly strong domestic and international teams in place at Paramount take full advantage of all the new and traditional opportunities.”
Cohen has also served as vice president of program acquisitions and scheduling for Tele-TV Media, vice president of film acquisitions and co-productions for Showtime Networks, and held roles at Viewer’s Choice, Palmer Cablevision and Post-Newsweek Cable. He holds a bachelor’s in economics from Portland’s Lewis & Clark College and a master’s in radio and television from San Francisco State University.