Amy Pascal, one of Hollywood’s highest profile female executive, is stepping down in May to launch a new production company and this leads to speculation about who will replace her at Columbia Pictures. Tom Rothman, former chairman and CEO of Fox Filmed Entertainment, in one choice from within the Culver City studio and rumored to be among the leading contenders for the job. Other completion for the job are Doug Belgrad, president of the studio’s Motion Picture Group, and Jeff Robinov, a former Warner Brothers executive whose new film company, Studio 8, signed a distribution deal with Sony Pictures Entertainment last year.
Amy Pascal joined Columbia Pictures in 1988 and was involved with many hits including “Groundhog Day,” “The Amazing Spider-Man” and “Men in Black”, and is a close friend of some of the biggest stars in Hollywood such as Adam Sandler and Will Smith.
Tom Rothman left Fox in 2012 after 18 years and a host of mega hits including “Avatar” and “Titanic”. He also founded and became the first president of Fox Searchlight, the specialty division that released Oscar winning movies including “Black Swan” and “The Descendants”. Pascal also gave her nod to Rothman in 2013 when he was chosen to help rejuvenate Sony’s TriStar films and considered a favorite to replace her because of his track record of success at Fox. An unknown source also gave Rothman credit for having a good reputation with the talent, making good films and people finding him likable.
Tom Rothman has been in entertainment news recently for other artistic endeavors such as “Baby Driver”, a movie he is working on with Edgar Wright and his role as Chairman of Sony Pictures. Time will tell if Rothman will assume this new role.