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Sony Pictures Digital Drivers 2013

David Bishop, president, Sony Pictures Home Entertainment

Bishop, a high-level strategist, is responsible for every aspect of home entertainment for the studio, navigating Sony Pictures’ path to bridge physical and digital home entertainment and driving industrywide initiatives for digital content.

Bishop has been instrumental in the push for UltraViolet, has championed both Walmart’s disc-to-digital offering and the idea of early electronic sellthrough before disc, and has been a driving force behind digital content enhancements (including SPHE’s MovieTouch, a tablet-specific “extras” offering for films including Men in Black 3 and Total Recall).

First appointed head of SPHE in 2006, Bishop coordinates the digital initiatives for home entertainment with Sony Computer Entertainment; Sony Electronics; Sony Pictures Entertainment; Sony Network Entertainment of America; Sony Mobile Communications; Sony DADC New Media Solutions; and the Digital Entertainment Content Ecosystem, the industry group behind UltraViolet.

Mitch Singer, chief digital strategy officer, Sony Pictures Entertainment

Singer serves as both the chief digital strategy officer for the studio and as the president of UltraViolet’s Digital Entertainment Content Ecosystem (DECE), the industry consortium behind the buy once, play anywhere cloud-based content system.

He is the collective studios’ main voice for the DECE, bridging the needs of content owners with retailers trying to sell UltraViolet to consumers and confronting the technological challenges that retailers, consumer electronics companies and consumers face when it comes to new technologies.

Singer has also had a huge hand in battling Internet piracy on behalf of the studio, and has helped establish home entertainment standards with CableLabs, AACS, DVD CCA and more.

Jim Underwood, EVP, worldwide digital and commercial strategy, SPHE

At SPHE, everything digital — strategy, distribution, operations, exploring new channels, windows, business models and product features — falls under the purview of Underwood. He’s responsible for worldwide digital distribution of SPHE film and television product across all transactional models, including EST and VOD, and across customer types. In this role, Underwood and his team oversee relationships with all of Sony’s digital customers, from digital pure-plays and MVPDs to the digital arms of traditional retailers such as Walmart’s Vudu. Helping these brick-and-mortar retailers manage the transition from physical to digital is also becoming a more important responsibility for Underwood, as the studio looks to lead consumers to digital ownership as well as physical.

Chris Cookson, president, Sony Pictures Technologies

As president of Sony Pictures Technologies, Cookson is responsible for all technology standards when it comes to the distribution and development of Sony Pictures’ entertainment. He also serves as studio liaison with other Sony divisions, handling content protection, cloud-based production and distribution, 4K, 3D and other technology issues.

Lexine Wong, senior EVP, worldwide marketing, SPHE

Wong leads the studio’s team responsible for tracking consumers’ digital preferences, marketing digital content, and persuading and inspiring consumers to collect both physical and digital products. She’s directly responsible for all marketing efforts for home entertainment products, including UltraViolet, electronic sellthrough and VOD.

Thanda Belker, EVP, U.S. pay-TV, Sony Pictures Television and SPHE

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment looks to Belker for all its video-on-demand and pay-per-view licensing and marketing activities. She’s responsible for pay-TV and subscription VOD licensing and promotional efforts at Sony Pictures Television, charged with overseeing the windowing of the studio’s content including both films and TV.

Matt Brown, EVP, worldwide commercial, SPHE

Brown works closely with the studio’s digital arm to implement strategies intended to maximize sales and rental potential for digital and physical media. He’s tasked with responding to evolving commercial demands of every country where Sony Pictures sells its products. His team of global sales executives helps SPHE determine windowing and pricing strategies, as well as innovative sales programs. Brown has served in a variety of senior executive roles at SPHE, including EVP for North American and international and EVP for Europe.

Eric Berger, EVP, digital networks, Sony Pictures Television

Also the GM of Sony’s multiplatform video entertainment network, Crackle, Berger is responsible for overseeing Crackle’s content, marketing, product development, distribution and engineering. He also manages mobile games and applications for the studio’s TV properties, as well as ad-supported digital businesses and partnerships with companies such as YouTube and Hulu.

Jason Spivak, EVP, worldwide digital distribution, SPHE

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment looks to Spivak to oversee the studio’s global transactional digital business. In his role, Spivak negotiates agreements and oversees relationships with all transactional digital services, retailers, international cable operators and telcos. Spivak previously served as SPHE’s VP of digital distribution and SVP of strategic development. Before that, he spent eight years at MGM Home Entertainment, overseeing that studio’s early digital distribution efforts.

Richard Berger, SVP, global digital strategy and operations, SPHE

Berger develops strategy for SPHE’s digital distribution business by creating new digital products, usage models and services, and enabling consumers to enjoy Sony Pictures movies in as many ways as possible. Berger is credited with assisting in Sony’s launch of UltraViolet and new digital offerings, including digital copies and disc-to-digital. Berger previously served as SVP of new media and technology at Sony Pictures Entertainment. He now serves on the board of the Entertainment Technology Center at the University of Southern California. He also co-chairs the Developing Platforms committee within DEG: The Digital Entertainment Group.

Rich Marty, VP, emerging platform development and marketing, SPHE

Marty oversees emerging platform initiatives, marketing strategy for UltraViolet, 4K for the home, the continued push for Blu-ray Disc and has a host of other important roles for the studio. He chairs the UltraViolet Marketing Task Force for DEG: The Digital Entertainment Group and also represents SPHE in multi-company marketing and promotions initiatives.

Spencer Stephens, CTO, Sony Pictures Entertainment

Stephens oversees the tech side of content creation and distribution for the studio, steering the implementation of the studio’s digital initiatives and expediting production and post production work. He’s responsible for the creation of new digital media workflows and systems, covering everything from cloud-based services to 3D and 4K, and helps set industrywide digital policies by working with several technical working groups, consortiums and industry forums.

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