CBS Films COO Bruce Tobey Exits; Lionsgate’s Wolfgang Hammer to Take Over Post

Despite reports saying Tobey's departure is due to a string of underperforming films, insiders maintain the exec had been looking to make a change for some time.

Wolfgang Hammer is joining CBS Films as its new COO. He succeeds Bruce Tobey, who served as the division's first COO and who is departing at the end of the year.

Hammer, who will report to president and CEO Amy Baer, will have responsibilities for acquisitions, finance, legal and business affairs.

Hammer joins CBS Films from Lionsgate, where he served as executive vp motion picture group and was involved in putting together such films as the upcoming Abducted, starring Taylor Lautner.

"Wolfgang's aptitude for innovative deal making, strong background in international financing, his excellent relationships with talent and his passion for the business of movies make him the perfect addition to our team," Baer said.

While media reports attributed the exec change to the string of underperforming movies, including last weekend's Faster, that CBS Films released during its first year, insiders maintained Tobey had been looking to make a change and that the process of bringing Hammer into the company had begun some weeks ago.

"Bruce got this division up and running and established for the days ahead," Baer said. "I have great respect and gratitude for his talent, commitment and his contributions to CBS Films."