2:03pm PT by Carolyn Giardina
'Despicable Me' Studio Illumination Names Peter Schube COO
Illumination — the animation studio behind Despicable Me, Minions, and most recently Sing — has named former Henson Company CEO Peter Schube as chief operating officer, as well as Scott Broock as executive vp digital strategy and innovation and Latifa Ouaou as executive producer.
The company on Thursday also announced that Natalie Fischer, who helped architect the Illumination business plan and served as its first COO, "has made the decision to scale back her role at the company after its next release later this summer (Despicable Me 3 is currently slated to open June 30), but will continue serving as a close strategic advisor to [founder and CEO Chris] Meledandri and Illumination."
Schube, who will work alongside Meledandri on business strategy and oversee all business operations, spent nearly three decades with The Jim Henson Company prior to joining Illumination. He most recently served as president and COO.
“We are fortunate to have someone as experienced as Peter ... join the team as our new COO. The addition of Scott and Latifa, each a leader in their field, will enable us to creatively innovate in both the theatrical and digital-first environments. From our inception, Natalie has played a crucial role in shaping our identity and building our brand, and we are so fortunate she has agreed to stay in the extended Illumination family," Meledandri said in a statement.
Prior to joining Illumination, Broock was global virtual reality evangelist at YouTube, and earlier served as vp content deal development at VR startup Jaunt. He also has produced viral campaigns and branded series for ABC News, News Corp.’s The Daily and Nickelodeon.
Most recently, Ouaou produced Puss in Boots and co-produced Monsters vs. Aliens for DreamWorks Animation, which was acquired by Illumination last spring. He credits also include DWA’s Academy Award-winner Shrek; A.I. Artificial Intelligence and How the Grinch Stole Christmas.
Illumination's upcoming slate includes Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas, which is set to open in November 2018; The Secret Life of Pets 2 in July 2019; Minions 2 in July 2020; and Sing 2 in December 2020.