Alan Bergman (L) and Alan Horn attend the 77th Annual Golden Globe Awards at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on January 05, 2020 in Beverly Hills, California.
Alberto E. Rodriguez | Getty Images Entertainment | Getty Images
Disney veteran Alan Horn is stepping down as co-chairman of Walt Disney Studios, the company announced Monday.
Horn will continue working as Disney’s chief creative officer while his partner, Alan Bergman, runs Disney’s studio content as the sole chairman, effective Jan. 1.
These executive shifts come less than two months after Disney announced that it was restructuring its media and entertainment divisions to focus more heavily on streaming content.
Horn, 77, and Bergman, 54, have jointly led the studios group at Disney as co-chairmen since May 2019. Together the pair presided over the integration of Lucasfilm and the Fox film studios into the Walt Disney family and have helped usher in a new era of streaming content for Disney+.
During their tenure, the studios segment has set a number of records at the box office and released blockbuster hits like “Frozen,” “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” “Black Panther” and “Avengers: Endgame,” which is currently the highest-grossing film of all time.
“The Walt Disney Studios’ achievements under the leadership of Alan Horn and Alan Bergman have been nothing short of extraordinary,” said Disney CEO Bob Chapek in a statement.
As chairman, Bergman will oversee creative, production, marketing and operations for Disney’s studios content, which includes Disney, Walt Disney Animation, Pixar, Marvel, Lucasfilm, 20th Century, Searchlight Pictures and Blue Sky Studios. He will also oversee Disney’s theatrical productions.
“I am grateful to take on the role of chairman of the studios as I believe deeply in our people, culture, and the work we do,” said Bergman, a 24-year Disney veteran.
From 2005 to 2019, Bergman served as president of Walt Disney Studios. In that role, he led the integrations of Pixar and Marvel Studios, and released 25 films that tallied at least $1 billion at the global box office.
Horn, as chief creative officer, will focus on the creative aspects of the studios’ content pipeline. Prior to working for Disney, Horn was the president and chief operating officer at Warner Bros. from 1999 to 2011. During his time with the company, the studio released the Harry Potter films and Christopher Nolan’s trilogy of Batman films. Horn also executive produced all three Hobbit films for the company.
Horn was forced into retirement by then-CEO of Time Warner Jeffrey Bewkes so that the company could groom younger talent to take over at the studio. However, in 2012, then-CEO of Disney Bob Iger lured Horn out of retirement to become chairman of Walt Disney Studios. In 2019, Bergman was brought on as his co-chairman with the expectation that he would take over the role in the future.
“It has been an honor to lead The Walt Disney Studios over the past eight-plus years,” Horn said. “It has been an amazing run, and the time feels right to shift my focus solely to our enormous creative slate.”
Disney announced around 100 film and TV projects during its annual investor day last week, about 80% are going directly to Disney+.