Kent Rice tapped as president/COO, overseeing all production. John Hyde moves to vice chairman, responsible for home entertainment, new business, partnership development and industry relations.
Starz Media Chairman and CEO Robert B. Clasen today announced the appointment of Kent Rice, currently CEO of the company’s animated feature film division, to the additional post of president and chief operating officer of Starz Media. Clasen also announced the appointment of John W. Hyde, currently president and COO of Starz Media, to the newly created position of vice chairman of the company.
In addition to running the Starz Animation unit, Rice will now have operational responsibility for the Film Roman animation unit and the Starz Productions live-action division, bringing all production at the company under one management. Hyde will continue to manage Starz Home Entertainment—including the Anchor Bay and Manga brands—and will take on additional responsibility for new business, partnership development, and both industry and talent relations. Hyde will work closely with Rice in the initial process of consolidating the various production entities. Both will continue to report to Clasen as will Starz Media President of Distribution and Marketing Neil Braun.
Clasen said: “This new arrangement will place responsibility for all programming production under Kent’s leadership, allowing him to make the best possible use of all our talented creative teams and resources in both Burbank and Toronto. It will also allow us to make use of John’s experience and wide range of industry contacts to develop closer relations with talent and to explore new business opportunities. As we continue to expand our enterprises these will be critical functions.”
Rice was named CEO of Starz Animation in August 2006. Prior to taking that post, he was executive adviser to Starz Entertainment where he played a key role in the acquisition of Starz Media from IDT Corp last year and managed its merger with Starz Entertainment.
Prior to joining Starz in 2005, Rice served as president of Il Ponte Partners, a consulting group. From 1995 to 2004 he was president and chief operating officer of International Channel Networks, then a subsidiary of Liberty Media. Prior to that he was chief operating officer of Liberty Global’s Norway Division and before that was a division president of Time Warner Cable.
Hyde was named president and COO of Starz Media in 2005. Prior to that he had been COO of IDT Entertainment and CEO of Film Roman since 1999. His career as an independent and with studios in production, distribution, and as an executive bring a wide range of contacts and experience to Starz. He has worked at or with Universal, Fox, MGM, Columbia, Warner, Disney and Paramount. His production credits include the feature films Neverending Story, Short Circuit, 9 1/2 Weeks, Lost Boys and Das Boot; animated series Mighty Mouse, King of the Hill and The Simpsons; and live action TV series Homicide (NBC), Masters of Horror (Showtime), Masters of Science Fiction (ABC).
Rice will remain based in Denver and Hyde will continue to work from the Starz Media office in Burbank, Calif.