WARNER BROS.' TOP FEMALE EXEC HAS EMERGED WITH MORE INFLUENCE after the executive power struggle that led to film chief Jeff Robinov's exit. Kroll's campaigns have helped put the studio ahead of its rivals, with revenue hovering around $4.2 billion. On top of that, Ben Affleck thanked her from the Oscar stage for shepherding Argo to a best picture win. Considering her clout, it was no surprise when she was named one of three execs to run the studio for newly promoted Warner Bros. Entertainment CEO Kevin Tsujihara. Her duties have expanded to include distribution as well as marketing, while Greg Silverman runs worldwide production and Toby Emmerich heads New Line. (Kroll's new title covers international distribution only until domestic president Dan Fellman retires.) Her biggest coup of 2013 was Gravity, a global hit that has earned more than $600 million and has emerged an awards contender. Kroll's campaign for Gravity, including black billboards showing the hint of a free-floating astronaut, tapped into Sandra Bullock's character's pain. "You experienced the fear with her," says the married exec, whose raunchy red-band campaign for We're the Millers also paid off, helping the film gross nearly $270 million globally. The horror pic The Conjuring earned $316.7 million, nearly 16 times its $20 million budget. Warner Bros.' outreach to the faith-based community included materials that helped religious leaders incorporate Superman into sermons. "The most interesting thing is to figure out how to tap into people who may not think a movie is for them." -- P.M.