The appointments will strategically place all aspects of creative under one leader in each division to streamline management of upcoming slates.
In addition, Cohn has aligned the marketing, public relations, business and legal affairs, human resources and recruiting functions for both features and television respectively under Michael Vollman, EVP, Marketing; Courtenay Palaski, SVP/Head of Communications; Josh Meyer, Head of Business Affairs; and Ashley Brinsfield, Head of Human Resources and Recruiting. All of these positions will report to Cohn, along with CFO, Kelly Betz; EVP Business Operations, Daniel Solnicki; and Robbin Kelly, Head of Legal Affairs.
“With this new structure, DWA is positioned for growth as we continue to create beloved and award-winning films and television series,” said Cohn. “Kristin and Peter are both very well-respected executives, and their leadership will only serve to strengthen DWA’s position as a home to the very best storytellers. The pitch and catch between the two divisions will ensure that diverse and unique voices can find their home regardless of the medium.”
Lowe, a 14-year Universal Pictures vet where she most recently served as EVP Production, will oversee feature development, casting and artistic management departments at DWA. Her track record at Uni includes Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again, Night School, and the Fifty Shades trilogy which grossed more than $1 billion globally. Lowe has spent the last two years’ working with the DWA team to develop their slate since the NBCU acquisition in 2016.
DWA under Universal is off to a fantastic start with How To Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World which will soon cross $300M worldwide. The studio’s next release is this fall, Abominable, an original comedy-adventure feature being produced in association with Pearl Studio.
Gal is expanding his previous EVP, Development role in the television business to include pre-school, current series, casting, music and creative talent management departments. Initially tasked with creating stories based on characters from DWA features like All Hail King Julien or The Epic Adventures of Puss in Boots, Gal has expanded DWA TV’s storytelling into reimagined classics such as Voltron Legendary Defender, She-Ra and the Princesses of Power and is digging into Universal IP with the upcoming Fast & Furious animated series, in addition to originals. The television division has rapidly expanded since its inception in 2013 and has produced over 20 original animated series and won 22 Emmy Awards with more than 25 shows in active production.