Fox Atomic off marketing

COO, others out in consolidation

Fox Atomic is moving its marketing operations under the aegis of 20th Century Fox and Fox Searchlight.

Atomic co-founder and COO John Hegeman is out as a result of the shuttering along with top creative and print advertising executives. Fox is trying to transition some of the 23 affected employees into other roles.

The move is aimed at reducing overlap among the divisions and effectively will make Atomic more of a division like Fox 2000 than a label unto itself.

The move also puts Atomic — which launched in March 2006 but has only had one profitable movie in "28 Weeks Later" and has taken lumps for movies like "The Comebacks" — under the wing of one of the most effective marketing operations in the industry.

"We are always analyzing how we can be more effective and realized that with the best commercial marketing in the industry being done at TCF and the best specialty marketing being handled by Fox Searchlight, it didn't make sense to have a separate marketing operation for Fox Atomic," Atomic and Searchlight president Peter Rice said.

Atomic's nonmarketing operations — which include production, business affairs, comic books division and an online department — will continue to operate as usual.

Atomic is entering a busy year. "The Rocker," starring Rainn Wilson and directed by Peter Cattaneo, is scheduled for release in April; in March, it goes into production on "Jennifer's Body," written by Diablo Cody, produced by Jason Reitman and starring Megan Fox.

It recently wrapped "Playboys"; is in production on "The Post-Grad Survival Guide," starring Alexis Bledel; and is prepping the actioner "Twelve Rounds," directed by Renny Harlin.