Mark Zoradi Joining DreamWorks Animation as COO

UPDATED: Ann Daly is being promoted to president of the company, while Lew Coleman takes on the role of vice chairman.

Former Disney executive Mark Zoradi is joining DreamWorks Animation as chief operating officer as the Glendale-based company beefs up its executive ranks, DWA announced today.

Ann Daly, who has served as COO since 2004, is being promoted to president. Lew Coleman, who has held the post of president since 2005, is taking on the role of vice chairman. Coleman also will continue to serve as CFO and acting chief accounting officer. 

Zoradi most recently served as president of the Walt Disney Studios Motion Picture Group, resigning that post in 2009 during Rich Ross' brief tenure as chairman of Walt Disney Studios. Just last week his name surfaced as one of the potential candidates that Sony Pictures was considering to replace outgoing distribution and marketing chief Jeff Blake.

During his years at Disney, Zoradi played a key role in creating Walt Disney Home Entertainment and The Disney Channel. He served as the general manager of Buena Vista Television and president of Buena Vista International, where he was responsible for international theatrical and home entertainment marketing and for distribution of Disney, Touchstone and Pixar films. He was named president of the motion picture group in 2006. 

"As DreamWorks grows, we are focusing on creating a strong management structure that has the expertise and capacity to best serve the changing needs of our company," Jeffrey Katzenberg, DWA CEO, said. "Ann and I are thrilled to welcome Mark to the DreamWorks family, and to recognize the current team for their tremendous contributions to the company. With these new changes, coupled with our other incredibly accomplished recent senior hires — Michael Francis as Chief Global Brand Officer and Margie Cohn as Head of Television, I'm very excited about the stellar caliber of our overall executive leadership team."

"I am enthusiastic about the opportunity to join the talented DreamWorks team at a time of remarkable expansion and growth for the company," Zoradi said. "DreamWorks' family of beloved characters and stories are known around the world, and I look forward to helping to build and expand their reach with new businesses and venues."

The company explained its new executive hire as part of its strategy to diversify beyond its core animation business by building up its television division, embarking on new initiatives in its location-based and retail entertainment divisions, creating a new in-house publishing division and growing its consumer products and online businesses.