The announcement was made Wednesday by Fox Film CEO and chairman, Stacey Snider, to whom Utley and Gilula will continue to report. They will continue to oversee the specialty film business and also will shepherd a newly created television division. As previously announced, the production duties for Searchlight Television will be overseen by the recently promoted Matthew Greenfield and David Greenbaum.
Gilula and Utley have been partnered for more than 18 years, and jointly served as presidents of Searchlight since 2009. They first collaborated on “Boys Don’t Cry,” which was released in 1999 and have led the release of 150 Searchlight productions and acquisitions, which have collectively won 36 Oscars and earned 132 Oscar nominations. Worldwide box office grosses for the films have topped $5 billion — including “The Shape of Water,” which won the best picture Oscar in March.
“The collaborative and innovative partnership that Nancy and Steve have created over the years is quite simply the gold standard in all of Hollywood,” Snider said. “They have not only shepherded Academy Award-winning pictures and global box office successes, but also cemented Searchlight as a worldwide brand – now covering both film and television – that constantly sets the bar for the entire specialty film marketplace. It is a privilege to announce their promotions to Chairmen of Fox Searchlight Pictures, and I couldn’t be happier for Nancy and Steve on both a personal and professional level.”
Utley and Gilula said in a joint statement: “We are honored to continue the work of Searchlight, in collaboration with our brilliant filmmakers, aided by our extremely talented, hard-working and passionate staff, and with the deeply-appreciated support of Stacey and all our Fox colleagues.”