WarnerMedia CEO John Stankey announced that Ann Sarnoff will replace Kevin Tsujihara as the Chair and CEO of Warner Bros.
Stankey stated, “I am delighted Ann is joining the WarnerMedia team and excited to work side by side with such a talented and accomplished individual. She brings a consistent and proven track record of innovation, creativity and business results to lead an incredibly successful studio to its next chapter of growth.” He added, “Ann has shown the ability to innovate and grow revenues and has embraced the evolution taking place in our industry. I am confident she will be a great cultural fit for WarnerMedia and that our employees will embrace her leadership, enthusiasm and passion for our business.”
Sarnoff is currently the President of BBC Studios Americas. She previously was the Chief Operating Officer of BBC Worldwide North America. She also worked for Viacom, CMT, VH1, the WNBA, and Dow Jones. Bloomberg notes that Sarnoff is also a Director of PayPal Holdings, Inc.
She accepted the position stating, “It is a privilege to join a studio with such a storied history. Warner Bros. has been an industry leader for decades and is known for creating many of the most iconic film, television and gaming properties.” She added, “I accept this position excited by the opportunity to work with the most accomplished executives and teams in media, and confident about carrying this incredible heritage forward with them.”
In a press release, WarnerMedia touts Sarnoff’s ability to grow digital revenue streams for BBC. They note she “led efforts to amplify BBC Studios’ global brands Doctor Who, Top Gear, and the natural history brand BBC Earth.” They add, “Sarnoff led the team that increased distribution of BBC America across the country to 80 million subscribers and managed the transition of digital program sales to where they exceeded linear program sales.”
That was reiterated by BBC Studios CEO Tim Davie, “Ann’s contribution to BBC Studios has been immense. She has grown our core business as well as driving significant innovation, including the successful creation of BritBox, the growth of BBC America alongside our partner AMCN, the launch of new channels like BBC Earth in Canada, and major new content and production deals. We will miss her generosity and her spirit of collaboration, and we wish her great success at Warner Bros.”
Sarnoff’s predecessor, Kevin Tsujihara resigned following a report from The Hollywood Reporter and subsequent investigation by WarnerMedia regarding his relationship with actress Charlotte Kirk.
This move will most likely impact the DC Universe streaming service, upcoming DC Comics based films, and more.