Gerry Rich leaving Paramount

Megan Colligan, Josh Greenstein will take on duties

Gerry Rich is stepping down as Paramount's president of worldwide marketing and at his request will leave the studio by month's end.

His duties will be taken over by Megan Colligan and Josh Greenstein, who will retain their current titles as co-presidents of marketing.

Colligan and Greenstein had been handling marketing duties at Paramount Vantage. When Paramount absorbed Vantage's distribution and marketing arms in June, the two were brought in to the parent studio, where they reported to Rich.

They now will report to Paramount vice chairman Rob Moore.

Combining the two marketing departments has taken a toll: Last month, Michael Vollman announced his resignation as executive vp integrated marketing and national publicity to take a marketing post at MGM/UA, and Rich was sorry to see him go.

But Rich said his own decision to leave was simply because he wanted to go out on top.

The executive, who also served stints at Miramax and MGM/UA, joined Paramount in 2004 in the Melrose Avenue studio's top marketing post. Recently, he's been involved in the release of such top grossers as "Iron Man," "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull" and "Kung Fu Panda," which have made Paramount the top-grossing studio of the summer.

"We've had an incredible summer, I've had a great run, and so it's mission accomplished," said Rich, who had less than two years to run on his contract. "I'm really grateful that Paramount let me out of my contract," he continued, adding that he planned to take "a long overdue summer vacation" before regrouping and considering future possibilities.

Also noting that the studio has had "a fantastic run" during Rich's tenure, Moore said Rich had told him earlier in the summer that he felt it was time to move on.

"We have a great team in place, so he wasn't leaving us in the lurch," said Moore, citing Greenstein's work on "Transformers" and "Iron Man" and Colligan's Academy campaigns for "There Will Be Blood" and "Babel." "In marketing, the more smart people you have, the better the results," he said.