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COLOGNE, Germany – Wolfgang Braun is out as Chairman and CEO of Studiocanal Germany, the German arm of the French production/distribution giant.
Rodolphe Buet, currently EVP of international distribution and business development at Studiocanal headquarters in Paris, will take over as head of the company’s German operations when Braun leaves at the end of the year. Braun intends to continue as an independent producer.
Braun’s exit is the second major executive shuffle at Studiocanal in as many weeks. Carsten Fink, like Braun a long-year German industry veteran, left his position as EVP of media distribution & business development at StudioCanal after just six months on the job.
Both Braun and Fink cut their teeth at the German division of Disney. Braun was head of Disney’s German theatrical division, Buena Vista International Germany, before taking over at StudioCanal in 2009. Fink’s last job was VP of German-speaking Europe for Buena Vista International Television.
Under Braun’s guidance, Studiocanal, then called Kinowelt, was integrated into the company’s pan-European distribution network, which includes operations in France and Optimum Releasing in the U.K.. That integration was made official with all national divisions taking on the Studiocanal brand.
But StudioCanal’s goal of creating a pan-European production/distribution powerhouse has yet to fully deliver. Under Braun only one film released by Studiocanal in Germany broke the 1 million admissions mark, the local standard for a blockbuster: Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck’s The Tourist. And even that Johnny Depp/Angelina Jolie vehicle performed below expectations, earning just $11.5 million (€8.8 million) in Germany.
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