Paramount Pictures is calling home its speciality label Paramount Players, folding the lower-budget and genre operation under the stewardship of the studio’s larger motion picture group. As a result of the decision, current Paramount Players chief Jeremy Kramer is exiting his post.
Paramount motion picture group co-heads Daria Cercek and Michael Ireland will run point on the unit moving forward. In light of the reorganization, Cercek and Ireland have promoted three executives — Ashley Brucks, previously senior executive vice president of production, will now serve as Paramount Players head of development. Jonathan Gonda and Vanessa Joyce will both be promoted to EVPs of production, having previously served as SVPs.
“Partnering with our filmmakers across a range of genres and budgets is critical to our studio’s vibrancy and our business’ long-term success,” Paramount president and CEO Brian Robbins said of the move. “In uniting Paramount Players within the larger motion picture group, our goal is to optimize the power of one division to scale the expertise and skill set of an incredibly talented team of executives under Daria and Mike.”
Robbins added that “over the last couple of years, Jeremy has played an integral role in further establishing Players as a youthful, entrepreneurial production arm throughout the industry and within our own company, and I want to thank him for all of his contributions and leadership.”
The current Paramount Players slate includes “Apartment 7A,” lead by Julia Garner and producers John Krasinski, Allyson Seeger of Sunday Night, Michael Bay, and Andrew Form and Brad Fuller of Platinum Dunes. They’ve also got “On the Come Up, an adaptation of Angie Thomas’s New York Times bestseller with Sanaa Lathan making her directorial debut; the sci-fi thriller “Significant Other” with Maika Monroe and Jake Lacy; “Senior Year” with Rebel Wilson; and Parker Finn’s “Something’s Wrong With Rose” with Sosie Bacon.
“This is the start of a new chapter for the Paramount Motion Picture Group,” added Cercek and Ireland. “Ashley, Jon and Vanessa are standout executives, and their promotions are well-deserved. At Players, Jeremy has assembled a strong team and this newly combined group is going to energize our efforts to make smart, fun, commercial movies across a wide range of budgets and genres.”
Brucks joined Paramount in 2008. She has been instrumental in the development and production of several hit films including “Scream,” “A Quiet Place” and “Paranormal Activity.” She began her career at DreamWorks as a production and development executive. Joyce came to Paramount in 2012 from Summit, as a creative executive. Gonda joined in 2017 as a vice president of production following a stint at Warner Bros. as a creative executive and, before that, a director of development at Fox Writers Studio.
Kramer was named president of Players in 2020. Previously, he was an executive and a producer at 20th Century Fox, Red Hour Films, DreamWorks and Miramax. He has more than 60 films under his belt, including “She’s All That,” “Blades of Glory,” “Disturbia,” “Tropic Thunder,” “The Secret Life of Walter Mitty” and the “Deadpool” franchise. Kramer got his start as independent producer with Jason Blum on Noah Baumbach’s first feature, “Kicking and Screaming.”