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Career Moves: Daniel Battsek Takes Over at Film4, Tom Staggs Leaves Disney and Much More

Career Moves: Daniel Battsek Takes Over at Film4, Tom Staggs Leaves Disney and Much More

Keep up with the revolving door that is the film industry with our weekly Career Moves column that tracks all the comings and goings of the industry leaders that make Hollywood tick. Check out last week’s Career Moves to find out who went where, when and why.

– After last week’s surprising departure of Film4 film chief David Kosse, the British outfit has named a new head: Daniel Battsek, currently President of Cohen Media Group. Previously, Battsek was President of National Geographic Films and President, Filmed Entertainment at Miramax Films. Kosse will stay on to aid the transition until October. Battsek will be partially tasked with continuing to seek out new partnerships, like new ones with Fox Searchlight and FP Films, and shepherding a large development slate (including new films from Lenny Abrahamson, Yorgos Lanthimos, Andrew Haigh, Steve McQueen, Martin McDonagh, Clio Barnard, Bart Layton, Garth Davis, Mike Leigh,  Andrea Arnold, Ben Wheatley, Ang Lee, Paddy Considine, Susanna White, John Cameron Mitchell, Benedict Andrews, Toby Macdonald and Danny Boyle) to the screen.
– In a surprise announcement Monday, Disney revealed that chief operating officer Thomas O. Staggs is out after a little more than one year in the post. He was a leading candidate to succeed Disney CEO and chairman Bob Iger in two years, when Iger is scheduled to step down. He had been at Disney for 26 years, where he had previously served as CFO and also ran its lucrative parks and resorts division. 

– Veteran film production executive Mark O’Connor is joining Sidney Kimmel Entertainment as the Company’s Executive Vice President of Production, involved in all SKE film and television projects. O’Connor reports directly to SKE Production President Carla Hacken. O’Connor most recently served as a senior executive at Todd Phillips Warner Bros.-based production company Green Hat Films, which he joined in 2009, working on such projects as Nima Nourizadeh’s found-footage comedy Project X and the upcoming Warner Bros. release “War Dogs,” directed by Phillips and starring Jonah Hill and Miles Teller, based on the Rolling Stone article “The Arms and the Dudes.”

– In other big UK news, BBC’s drama chief Polly Hill has joined rival ITV as head of drama. Hill isn’t the only new ITV-er, as she will be joined by Optomen managing director Sue Murphy, who will serve as commissioner for factual entertainment. ITV Studios’ Siobhan Greene will now become the commissioning team’s head of entertainment, while Peter Davey has been moved up to head of comedy and Angela Jain is the new managing director of ITV Studios Entertainment. The news was first reported by Deadline.

– The British Academy of Film and Television Arts has appointed Barbara Broccoli OBE as their Vice President for Film. Broccoli will co-chari BAFTA’s Council along with Greg Dyke, the newly appointed Vice President for Television. Broccoli, along with her brother Michael G. Wilson, owns EON Productions and have produced the last eight Bond films together, including “Skyfall” and “Spectre.” Broccoli is also a Trustee of Into Film, a film education charity working with young people aged 5-19, a Patron of the Cinema and Television Benevolent Fund, an Honorary Fellow of the National Film and Television School and an Honorary Member of Women in Film and Television UK. 

– Warner Bros. SVP Marketing Analytics Greg Durkin has left the studio after nine years to join the fledgling entertainment research firm Portent.IO, where he will serve as Chief Marketing Officer and co-founder. Durkin will work alongside co-founder and CEO Hamish Brocklebank, along with co-founder Uri Grodzinski. At WB, Durkin worked on such important properties as the “Harry Potter” franchise and “The Dark Knight.” The news was first reported by Deadline.

–  XYZ Films has announced that they have expanded their sales division by bringing on Eric Min as Head of International Sales. Min, a new hire for the company, will be based out of Los Angeles and will be spearheading international sales at the upcoming Marché du Film. Recently, Min served as Executive Vice President, Film & TV for Aldamisa Entertainment. Before that, he was Vice President of International Sales and Distribution for Seven Arts Pictures.

Check out a trailer for XYZ’s “The Invitation,” which opens this week:

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