Berger to head Warner Bros. in U.K.

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LONDON -- Warner Bros. has upped U.K.-based executive Josh Berger to president and managing director of Warner Bros. Entertainment United Kingdom and Ireland, the studio said Monday.

Berger's rise to the top of Warner Bros.' U.K. operations was announced by studio chairman and CEO Barry Meyer, president and chief operating officer Alan Horn and executive vp international Richard Fox.

A veteran with 17 years under his belt at the company, Berger will continue to oversee all aspects of Warner Bros. Entertainment's businesses in the U.K., working directly with both the in-country, regional and U.S.-based heads of various units.

His area of oversight includes theatrical production and distribution, television production and distribution, home video, digital distribution, new and emerging media, interactive games and consumer products.

The studio also has given Berger the responsibility of identifying and maximizing in-territory and cross-company opportunities among the various businesses falling under his purview, as well as exploring and exploiting new business opportunities unique to WBEUK.

Additionally, Berger will be charged with working closely with parent Time Warner "to ensure that WBEU.K. and its parent studio are appropriately represented in matters regarding public policy in Europe."

Based in London, Berger will continue to report through Fox to Meyer and Horn.

Under Berger's watch, Warner Bros. in the U.K. has posted strong theatrical and DVD figures from such titles as "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" and also has widened distribution of its television product across broadcast, cable and satellite networks.

He also oversaw WB's claim to being the first studio to put movies online and firmed up consumer product activity here on the back of movies such as "Scooby Doo."

In a statement, Meyer described Berger as "a world-class executive" and a "real asset" to the studio. "This promotion is an official recognition of his many, many contributions to Warner Bros.," Meyer added.

Horn echoed Meyer's sentiments: "(Berger) and his team have done a great job handling our motion pictures in the U.K., and I look forward to many more successful years of working together on that front as well as all of our businesses."

For his part, Fox said that Berger's "combination of business acumen, savvy negotiating skills and a keen understanding of the market has served us very well in his leadership of our company in the U.K."

Said Berger: "With the business ever-changing and ever more challenging, I look forward to continuing and expanding my role for the company that has been my home for the past 17 years."
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