WarnerMedia has tapped Jay Levine to serve as chief strategy officer and executive VP of business operations for its studios and networks group.
An 11-year veteran of the studio, Levine recently served as Warner Bros.’ executive VP of television business strategy and digital services. The studio also announced that Thomas Gewecke, long seen as a rising star of the company, has decided to step down at the end of September. He served as Warner Bros.’ chief digital officer and executive VP of strategy and business development.
“Warner Bros. is an extraordinary place, with an unmatched legacy of iconic storytelling, and my time here has been the highlight of my career,” Gewecke said in a statement. “I’m so thankful to the amazing teams I’ve had the privilege to work with who have made these past 12 years so rewarding and memorable. I’m looking forward to spending more time with my family here in Portland, Oregon, and exploring some new vistas.”
In his new role, Levine will help orchestrate a broader restructuring of WarnerMedia, one that’s intended to have the company’s film and television arms work more collaboratively. WarnerMedia recently launched its own in-house challenger to Netflix in HBOMax, a streaming service’s that spring debut fell short of expectations with disappointing subscription numbers and a lack of buzzy shows.
In August, the company laid off hundreds of employees Monday across Warner Bros., HBO and DC Entertainment. At the same time, newly minted WarnerMedia CEO Jason Kilar orchestrated a major management shakeup in which Robert Greenblatt and Kevin Reilly, who were in charge of content at HBO Max, were ousted and Warner Bros. CEO Ann Sarnoff assumed additional responsibilities.
Levine will retain his current portfolio, which include strategic and operational responsibilities of the WB Television Group and management of the company’s interest in the CW Network.
“Jay is insightful and future-focused, and I look forward to continue working with him to successfully deliver on the ambitious strategic and operational goals we’ve set for the Studios and Networks Group,” said Sarnoff, head of WarnerMedia’s studios and networks.