Lions Gate Entertainment Toronto is restructuring its family entertainment division, including a name change from Family Home Entertainment to Family Entertainment to reflect the division's broadened scope and vision. In this effort, Anne Parducci has been promoted to the newly created position of evp in charge of family entertainment and marketing while evp Ken Katsumoto sees expanded responsibilities. Additionally, Lions Gate has promoted director of marketing Michael Rathauser to vp, Family Entertainment. And industry vet Glenn Ross is departing to pursue other ventures.
"We are putting a tremendous amount of talent and resources toward increasing the quality and quantity of our family-oriented properties," said Lions Gate Ent. president Steve Beeks, to whom Parducci reports. "While we plan to continue to offer quality direct-to-video releases, the change reflects the actual focus of the company, which extends to theatrical releases as well as television programming.
Anne's distinctive vision has been an incredible asset to our company since she came on board last year," added Beeks. "She has tremendous expertise in children's and family-oriented properties. Through this new position, her responsibilities will focus on continuing to grow the Family Entertainment division across all formats. Michael and Ken have great instincts for this type of product and they will both be more involved in the overall direction of the division."
Parducci, formerly evp, marketing, she will be responsible for overseeing the day-to-day activities of all Family Entertainment projects. She will maintain her current marketing responsibilities, managing activities for all Lions Gate Home Ent. product including the development, creative direction and strategic marketing surrounding new and library releases on video and DVD. Parducci will also continue to build brand marketing for the company's Home Entertainment and Family Entertainment divisions. Katsumoto and Rathauser report to her.
Prior to joining Lions Gate, Parducci spent 14 years at Mattel Inc. most recently as svp, business development. Previously, she was svp of the worldwide marketing department, girl's division from 2000-2002. At Mattel, she was responsible for marketing Mattel's leading brands including Barbie, Polly Pocket, and more.
Katsumoto, who has been responsible for the creative and business development and production of all Lions Gate family entertainment-oriented intellectual properties for the last five years, will take on additional duties in development and acquisitions of family properties for video, television and theatrical distribution. Katsumoto will continue to produce animated movies based on Marvel characters and a new animated movie based on the PBS series ARTHUR among other titles. He will report to Parducci.
Rathauser has been intimately involved with Family Entertainment releases since prior to Lions Gates merger with Artisan in 2003. The industry veteran has developed and implemented all marketing activities for the most recent title in the direct-to-video BARBIE PRINCESS SERIES - BARBIE AS THE PRINCESS AND THE PAUPER - as well as the first-ever CARE BEARS CGI animated direct-to-video feature, HOT WHEELS, RESCUE HEROES, and more. He is working on the first release in the newly created BARBIE FAIRYTOPIA series.
Over the past five years, Rathauser has been responsible for overseeing the company's biggest rental and sell-through titles including the mass launch of the BABY EINSTEIN videos, NATIONAL LAMPOON'S VAN WILDER, JONAH: A VEGGIETALES MOVIE and THE LIMEY. Prior to joining the company in 1999, was an advertising account Exec for DDB and Grey Advertising for four years.
Separately, Ross said he has chosen to depart Lions Gate Home Ent. to pursue other opportunities. Ross joined the company in 1998 while it was Artisan Home Entertainment and for the past seven years, Ross has been an essential part of building the Family Home Ent. (FHE) brand. He previously served as svp of Hallmark Home Entertainment and was responsible for the acquisition, marketing and sales of a broad range of films.
"Having worked with Ross for the past 16 years, I have come to respect his passion for his work as well as his instincts in building a family home business for the company," said Beeks. "His contributions in many areas of the company have helped Artisan and Lions Gate become the dominant home entertainment force in the industry. He will be missed and we wish him well in his future endeavors."
"It has been a great experience working with Artisan and Lions Gate Home Ent. for the past seven years to help build the dominant independent home entertainment company," stated Glenn Ross. "I am particularly proud of my role in building the Family Home Entertainment (FHE) brand to the status that it currently enjoys. I am looking forward to announcing my plans soon and feel personally exhilarated about this next chapter in my career."
Lions Gate Ent. (www.lgf.com) is a leading diversified independent producer and distributor of motion pictures, television programming, home entertainment, family entertainment and video-on-demand content. Its prolific library of 8000+ titles is one of the largest in the entertainment industry.