Tom Rothman to be Amy Pascal’s Successor?

Amy Pascal, who has been with Sony Pictures for 15 years announced that she will be leaving after the hack scandal. She has been present in the studio for hits such as “Groundhog Day” and “Men in Black”. Pascal has made friends with many a star in the nearly three decades she has worked for Sony, including Will Smith and Adam Sandler.With Pascal leaving Sony it begs the question of who will be replacing her in May.

Insiders of Sony have stated that her successor will most likely come from within the company. In the contenders for this position is Tom Rothman. Rothman was an executive officer at Fox for 18 years before leaving in 2012. Tom Rothman was the president and founder of Fox Searchlight, which produced movies like “The Descendants.”

In 2013 Pascal and Chief Executive Michael Lynton recruited Rothman to help revitalize Sony’s TriStar film label. He is currently the favorite for the position. However, Tom Rothman does have some competition, internally and externally. Also considered are Doug Belgrad, who has recently named the president of Sony’s Motion Picture Group, and Jeff Robinov, who worked for Warner Brothers and whose new company, Studio 8, signed a contract with Sony about a year ago.

Originally printed in the LA Times.

It’s The 25th Birthday Of The Simpsons!

Happy quarter-century birthday, Bart! The animated TV series The Simpsons celebrated its 25th year of continuous broadcast. This makes it is the longest-running American TV sitcom, the longest-running American animated TV show, and American scripted prime-time television series all at the same time.

Not many Simpsons fans know this, maybe the Keith Mann Dynamic Search Partners don’t either, but creator Matt Groening was originally called on by FOX network to bring his newspaper comic strip, Life in Hell, to the big screen. Literally in the waiting room at the appointment, Groening decided that his pride and joy was too precious to hand over to FOX and conceived the idea for the Simpsons family instead.

After all, how could any series run continuously for 25 years, including films and holiday specials, and not eventually run out of fresh ideas? On the other hand, the show has a cast of thousands now and is a fantastic template for just about anything you want a show to do. So there’s room for expansion – but no matter what, Bart will still be the brat, Lisa will still be the prodigy, Maggie will still be the baby, Marge will still be the hausfrau, and Homer will still be the bumbling doofus. Is this all we ask of our characters?

New POTA Films Will Not Remake Original

From a timeline perspective, the new Planet of the Apes films are inching closer and closer to the events of the first film in 1968. Thankfully, we will never see a remake of the original. Matt Reeves has pointed out his new series is not going to include a remake of the original. It simply will stay on the prequel path. In a way, this is a good thing because it preserves the integrity of the first film and the sequel, Beneath the Planet of the Apes (1970).

Granted, the events of the three other film sequels and the television series were wiped out. The original movie reboot from Tim Burton (mercifully) was dropped down a black hole. And what about the Filmation animated television series? Does that could at all?

Let us concern ourselves about the here and now. Rise of the Planet of the Apes was a massive hit. Brian Torchin has watched that a few times. Seriously, it was a hit far greater than most people ever thought it would be. Rumors have it the third film will be called War of the Planet of the Apes, but that is not confirmed.

Hollywood Executive Tom Rothman

“I’ve loved movies my whole life” observed Tom Rothman, when asked about the course of his career and his recent move to become Chairman of a joint venture with Sony Pictures to create new films and television shows under the Tristar name. Rothman, it seems, was made for the movie and television business, receiving a law school education in New York City, followed by a traditional law career that was honed into a successful entertainment career in Hollywood.

Rothman began his higher education experience when he attended Brown University where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in English and American Literature in 1976. Upon graduation, he began his legal studies at Columbia University in New York City. His first job as a private attorney began at the law firm of Frankfurt, Kurnit, Klein and Selz, working in all arts-related fields.

With significant legal experience representing clients in the areas of theater, film, television, dance, publishing, dance, music and photography, Rothman drastically changed his career when he left law firm life for Columbia Pictures in the role of Executive Vice-President. At Samuel Goldwyn, Rothman discovered such highly acclaimed film directors as Kenneth Branagh, Ang Lee and Anthony Minghella, while he worked on successful films The Madness of King George, The Wedding Banquet, Eat Drink Man Woman, Wild at Heart, Much Ado About Nothing, Truly Madly Deeply, Longtime Companion and Henry V.

From Samuel Goldwyn, Rothman moved to Fox to serve in multiple capacities and ultimately achieved the title of Chairman and CEO of Fox Filmed Entertainment during the years of 2000-2012. During Rothman’s tenure, Fox accomplished some of its greatest successes both financially and artistically, with such productions as Academy Award Winner Slumdog Millionaire, Titanic, Avatar, Lincoln, Life of Pi, Master and Commander, Cast Away, Descendants, Walk the Line, Black Swan, Borat, The Devil Wears Prada, Beasts of the Southern Wild, Juno, Marley and Me, The X-men series, Minority Report, Little Miss Sunshine, Boys Don’t Cry, Moulin Rouge, Sideways, The Crucible, Something About Mary, The Simpsons Movie, and the Ice Age series. Fox films received over 150 Oscar nominations and earned record profits under Rothman’s leadership.

In addition to his work as an entertainment executive, Mr. Rothman has found the time and energy to host his own television production, called Fox Legacy, which focuses on the history of classic films. He has also appeared at numerous colleges and universities to lecture on the subject of film and he has contributed to Movie Business Book, a reference commonly used at film and business schools.

Mr. Rothman has actively contributed his time to non-profit projects in the arts and entertainment fields. Nominated recently by President Obama to serve on the National Council of the Arts, Rothman has been named to the Board of the Corporation of Brown University and California Institute for the Arts. In addition, he has donated his time to Mentor L.A. Partner Schools, the Fulfillment Fund, the Sundance Institute, the American Film Institute and New York’s Art Therapy Outreach Center.

From everything I’ve read on the Hollywood Reporter, he seems to be a great fit for his new role. Next year will show how much his presence will influence the new productions coming out of the studio.

If you’d like to read more about Tom Rothman, check out the links below: