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Eddie Cunningham has been named president of Universal Pictures Worldwide Home Entertainment.
Cunningham, who currently serves as president of Universal Pictures International Entertainment, will expand his duties to include the company’s domestic home entertainment operations, a move designed to provide closer collaboration and a greater global focus across the organization, the studio said. He will continue to report to Universal Pictures president and chief distribution officer Peter Levinsohn, who announced his appointment.
As Cunningham takes over the new post, which combines Universal’s domestic and international home entertainment, Craig Kornblau, who had served as president, Universal Studios Home Entertainment, overseeing domestic home entertainment, is leaving the company after 16 years.
“As the home entertainment landscape continues to evolve, we need to ensure that we’re operating as one global team positioning ourselves for the greatest success,” Levinsohn said. “Eddie has had tremendous results as head of our international home entertainment division and he will be a terrific leader for our group as we work to shape the future of Universal’s home entertainment business with an even greater global focus.”
Cunningham, who is based in London and has been UPIE’s president for eight years, will relocate to Los Angeles in order to work more closely with Levinsohn and the Universal Pictures executive team.
Prior to his current role at Universal, Cunningham was managing director of Polygram’s U.K. home entertainment business and budget music labels in 1994, preceding the acquisition by Universal Pictures in 1999. He then became chairman of U.K. operations and regional managing director for the Nordic countries as well as Australia and New Zealand, before being promoted to president, UPIE in November 2006. Before joining Universal, Cunningham held a number of roles in retail and distribution. He was an operating board member of the Woolworths retail business and commercial director of Entertainment U.K., the entertainment software wholesaler and distributor.
Of Kornblau, Levinsohn said, “Craig has been a tremendous asset to our company, consistently delivering incredible results for our films throughout his 16 years at Universal. He’s been a leader in our industry and he’s helped Universal to continually find new and innovative ways to distribute and market our films in the home entertainment space. We are extremely grateful to him for his years of service.”
NBCUniversal vice chairman Ron Meyer said, “Craig has been an extraordinary business leader and friend to all of us at Universal for 16 years. He was instrumental in helping form our home entertainment business, and he transformed the way we approached things, ensuring our business thrived through many years of change and uncertainty. I’m incredibly proud of how Craig and his team have positioned us for the future and everything accomplished.”
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