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DreamWorks Animation Hires Veteran Sony Exec Randy Lake as COO

Veteran Sony Pictures executive Randy Lake has joined DreamWorks Animation as chief operating officer.

Lake will start at DreamWorks Animation in July. In his new role, he will be responsible for strategic planning and primary business operations, including feature and television production, post production, business and legal affairs, finance and technology.

“As we solidify our leadership team, Randy provides a strong strategic vision that will be beneficial to the entire studio as we partner in taking DreamWorks into the future,” said Margie Cohn, DreamWorks Animation president. “His years of experience working cross-divisionally will allow us to expand upon the successful collaboration between our film and television divisions, as well as with our colleagues at Universal, furthering DreamWorks position as one of the most prolific animation studios in the world.”

Lake most recently served as president of studio operations and Imageworks at Sony Pictures Entertainment, where he oversaw all operations, strategy, and planning for Sony Pictures Imageworks, post production services, production services, global mastering & servicing and asset management.

Lake joined Sony in 2006 as VP, and later became senior VP of corporate development. He is a member of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts & Sciences, and the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences.

Prior to Sony, Lake served as a strategy consultant to the entertainment, media and technology industries for Booz Allen in New York, London and San Francisco. He began his career as a securities attorney with Brobeck, Pheleger & Harrison in San Francisco.

DreamWorks Animation was acquired by NBCUniversal in 2016. “How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World,” the first DreamWorks Animation film to be distributed by Universal Pictures, grossed over $500 million worldwide.

DreamWorks has “Abominable” slated to release in September, followed by “Trolls World Tour” and “The Croods 2” in 2020. DreamWorks Animation Television is in production on more than 20 series, including Guillermo del Toro’s “3Below,” “She-Ra and the Princesses of Power,” and “Spirit Riding Free.”

Tom Rothman, chairman of Sony Pictures Entertainment Motion Picture Group, said in a note to employees that Michelle Grady would be promoted to fill Lake’s slot. He credited Grady with playing a key role on the development of the studio’s animated “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse.”

“I’m very pleased to announce that Michelle Grady will be promoted to EVP and now oversee Sony Pictures Imageworks, reporting directly to me,” Rothman wrote. “An extremely talented and creative force in animation and VFX, Michelle has been with the studio since 2016. During that time, she has helped build Imageworks’ reputation as an artist-first creative house, most recently in making possible our filmmakers’ visions for ‘Spider-Verse.'”

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