THR's Women in Entertainment 2011: Power 100
For Minghella, 32, the year has had a circle-of-life quality: On Nov. 27, she and her husband, TV writer and author Mitch Larson, welcomed their first child, daughter Delilah. She also completed her first year as head of production at Columbia, which, she says, "has been very much like coming home," since she began her career as director of creative affairs at Columbia in 2005 before segueing into a two-year stint as president of production at Sony Pictures Animation.
Back at Columbia, working with president Doug Belgrad, she picked up right where she left off. Having had a hand in Salt -- she had suggested the title character should be a woman -- she's now developing Salt 2, and she's also reunited with the Bond franchise now that Skyfall is in production.
From her new post, she watched the worldwide breakout success of the live-action, animated The Smurfs ($561 million), which she'd cultivated at SPA. "Having grown up in Europe," says Minghella, the daughter of the late filmmaker Anthony Minghella and Yvonne Miller, "I knew the strength of the Smurfs brand, but the success of the movie is more than I could have dreamed of."
She's working again with Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs writer-directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller, who are in postproduction on 21 Jump Street. And she speaks the lingo when it's time to talk the big effects sequences being readied for next year's The Amazing Spider-Man and the Total Recall remake.
As she focuses on her own family, she's also looking forward to working on such family franchises as a Karate Kid sequel and Will Smith's Overbrook Entertainment's new take on the musical Annie. But it's her animation background that continues to inspire her: "I was given a great education in animation and visual effects on The Smurfs that I now use on a daily basis."
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