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Parker & Morrison to Steer Fox Animation as Part of Studio Restructuring

Fox Filmed Ent. launched a series of promotions in the wake of the studio's record $2 billion-plus global box office last year and the sudden departure two weeks ago of Fox Animation president Chris Meledandri to Universal.

Hutch Parker has been elevated to vice chairman of Twentieth Century Fox Film Group, which includes oversight of both Twentieth Century Fox and Fox Animation. Parker has been president of TCF since 2005. He joined Fox in 1995 as svp, production. He was named president of production in 1999.

Vanessa Morrison, a 12-year Fox production veteran, will become the new president of Fox Animation. Morrison has supervised numerous CGI intensive and family oriented films, including the GARFIELD, DR. DOOLITTLE and CHEAPER BY THE DOZEN films. The staff at Fox Animation, including vp John Cohen, will continue in place, reporting to Morrison, who will report to Parker. The Fox animation slate includes this summer's THE SIMPSONS: THE MOVIE, Blue Sky Studio's HORTON HEARS A WHO and Wes Anderson's THE FANTASTIC MR. FOX in stop motion.

Speaking of Blue Sky, Bruce Keane, currently general manager and cfo, has been elevated to coo and cfo. Bruce Anderson, currently an associate producer on HORTON HEARS A WHO, will also become general manager of Blue Sky. "Blue Sky is a rock solid company, with an incredible creative talent pool in place, and Brian and Bruce's new roles will continue that stability," said Morrison.

In addition, Emma Watts and Alex Young, who guided NIGHT AT THE MUSEUM and X-MEN: THE LAST STAND, respectively, to more than $400 million in worldwide box office each, have been named co-presidents of production for TCF. Watts also oversaw production on I ROBOT, among other films, while Young also oversaw production on the first two films in the X-MEN franchise, FANTASTIC FOUR and the upcoming LIVE FREE OR DIE HARD and FANTASTIC FOUR: RISE OF THE SILVER SURFER.

Debbie Liebling, who shepherded BORAT to nearly $250 million in worldwide box office, will become president of production for Fox's new label Atomic, reporting to Peter Rice. Liebling is being promoted from her position as evp of production at TCF. She joined Fox in 2002 and prior to that was chief programming exec for Comedy Central's original shows and served as co-producer for the feature film SOUTH PARK: BIGGER LONGER & UNCUT and worked as an exec at MTV and at Nickelodeon.

Fox chairmen Jim Gianopulos and Tom Rothman commented: "A central management tenet at Fox is that talented people get the chance to move up. We ourselves, and the majority of our senior staff, have benefited from this philosophy. We are gratified that these gifted executives now continue that tradition. They each fit in their new roles perfectly and we feel blessed to have such a deep bench to turn to as we build on success. We also know that they have great people underneath them who they will continue to develop into our next leaders. We proudly congratulate each of them on their well deserved promotions."

Parker added, "Tom and Jim have built the most dynamic studio in town and we've got the best executive talent pool in the business. I thank them and congratulate my colleagues and look down the road and see even more growth and success."

One of the world's largest producers and distributors of motion pictures, Fox Filmed Ent. produces, acquires and distributes motion pictures throughout the world. These motion pictures are produced or acquired by the following units of FFE: Twentieth Century Fox, Fox 2000 Pictures, Fox Searchlight Pictures, Fox Atomic and Twentieth Century Fox Animation.