Business & Economy

Universal dumps movie bosses after summer flicks flop

Universal Pictures has let go its two top movie studio bosses after a disastrous summer season. KPCC’s Nick Roman has details.

Here’s how fast things change in Hollywood: in January, Marc Shmuger and David Linde got new contracts to serve as the co-chairmen of Universal’s movie studio. They’d been promoted three years earlier, and they’d been key players in bringing Universal Pictures its two most profitable years ever.

But then came last summer. Universal rolled out its blockbusters, led by Will Ferrell’s Land of the Lost, and watched them flop. Now Shmuger and Linde are out. Universal Studios president Ron Meyer has promoted two other executives to take their place. Adam Fogelman, who'd been in charge of marketing, takes over as chairman. His co-chair is production chief Donna Langley.

Studio boss seems like a temp job nowadays in Hollywood. Two weeks ago, Disney Studios removed its boss. A month earlier, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer took out chief executive Harry Sloan. MGM had given him a three-year contract the previous summer. Back in June, Paramount dumped its two top movie bosses.