Tomas Jegeus has been tapped to run Fox International Productions as its new president. The announcement was made today by 20th Century Fox chairman and chief exec Jim Gianopulos and co-chairman Stacey Snider. FIP launched in 2008 and quickly grew under departed former head Sanford Panitch into one of the more dynamic studio local-language production and acquisition divisions. During its seven years, FIP titles have grossed $900 million at the global box office from films it produced or acquired. Jegeus, who currently serves alongside Paul Hanneman as 20th Century Fox co-president of worldwide theatrical marketing and distribution, will step into the new role September 1. He fills in the void left by Panitch, who joined Sony in April.
Jegeus and Hanneman have been running the much-respected international marketing and distribution teams since October 2005 before both were promoted to run worldwide marketing and distribution in 2013. Hanneman will continue to run the global marketing and distribution operations for the studio. In his new position, Jegeus will report to Snider. He had worked with FIP in his former roles when Fox International handled all marketing and distribution for FIP film titles. He is well-known for his deep understanding of international markets. Fox has historically been one of the most active studio players in local territories, particularly Asia and Latin America.
FIP currently has four movies in release, including its Chinese-language remake of Bride Wars; El Clan in Argentina; and Antonio Banderas’ Chilean miner drama The 33 in Chile.
Local-language production has been a mixed bag for the studios even while international grosses have continued to grow. A high point for the divisions came just less than a decade ago, when each of the studios had specific divisions run by some of the smartest execs in the business, including Christian Grass at Universal, Richard Fox at Warners, Panitch at Fox, Jason Reed at Disney, Deb Schindler at Sony and Matt Brodlie at Paramount. It says something about the volatility of that specific business that only Richard Fox remains in the same post. Jegeus’ long-standing understanding of both Fox and international markets in general should put him in good stead when it comes to moving FIP forward.
“Tomas, along with Paul Hanneman, has played a key leadership role in our preeminent international marketing and distribution operation for decades and we are thrilled that Tomas will bring his enormous talent and skill set to lead FIP to even greater success in the future,” said Gianopulos in today’s announcement.
“I am so impressed with Tomas’ combined creative instincts and keen sense of how films will appeal to local cultures, audiences and the international marketplace and I’m so gratified that the company will continue to benefit from his expertise,” added Snider. “We are excited to support Tomas in extending Fox’s international local productions and to making an even greater impact in this very important part of our business.”
Said Jegeus: “I am honored that Jim and Stacey have given me this incredible opportunity to further build upon Fox’s success with international productions. And I’m thrilled to be working with the incredibly talented FIP team in Los Angeles and around the world. Going forward, I’m looking forward to an even deeper involvement between FIP and the best international marketing and distribution team in the world, under the continued guidance of Paul Hanneman.”
Jegeus first joined Fox in 1990 and has worked across the company, including its offices in the UK, Hong Kong and Los Angeles, where FIP is based. From 2002-2004, he served as marketing EVP for Universal and Paramount’s international joint venture UIP. Jegeus returned to Fox in 2004 as EVP at 20th Century Fox International, overseeing the international marketing campaigns for the entire slate of releases.