Emma Watts has been promoted to vice chairman of 20th Century Fox Film, the studio announced on Thursday.Watts will continue to serve as production president, a post she has had since 2007. The promotion clears up Watts' status at the company, a position that was in question after Stacey Snider took over as its sole chairman last summer. Watts had been a key ally of ousted studio chief Jim Gianopulos. There were mutterings that she did not get along with...
The British-born exec has been hugely successful overseeing Fox’s rebooted mega-franchises including the “Planet of the Apes” and “X-Men” juggernauts. No wonder she was named vice chairman of 20th Century Fox Film in February.
Watts adds oversight of physical production, post production, visual effects and music to a portfolio that already included production, story, creative affairs and casting departments.
Named president of production in 2009 (having previously served as co-president since 2007 and exec VP of production since 2005), Watts will oversee Matthew Vaughn’s “Kingsman: The Golden Circle,” the follow-up to his box office hit “Kingsman: The Secret Service”; the mystery-thriller “Murder on the Orient Express,” starring and directed by Kenneth Branagh; the live-action musical “The Greatest Showman,” inspired by the life of P.T. Barnum and starring Hugh Jackman, Zac Efron and Michelle Williams; and “Alita: Battle Angel,” directed by Robert Rodriguez and produced by James Cameron. Watts also will supervise production of the much-anticipated new installments of Cameron’s “Avatar” franchise.
Recent successes include “Logan,” the third installment in the Wolverine franchise; David Fincher’s “Gone Girl”; John Hamburg’s “Why Him?”; Tim Burton’s “Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children”; Bryan Singer’s “X-Men: Apocalypse”; and Tim Miller’s “Deadpool,” the highest grossing R-rated film in history. Ridley Scott’s Fox release “The Martian” received seven Academy Award nominations.
Watts has been with Fox since 1997, following stints as a creative executive with Russell Simmons’ Def Jam Pictures and for Oliver Stone. Among her first assignments at the studio was shepherding Cameron’s blockbuster “Avatar,” and the hit comedy franchise “Night at the Museum.”