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Digital Drivers 2015: Independents


McGurk is responsible for transitioning Cinedigm into a multiplatform distributor of non-theatrical movies. Recent platform launches include Docurama, available on iOS, Roku, Xbox and Samsung; CONtv; and a third OTT channel, Dove Entertainment Channel. He also helped forge an OTT partnership with TV4 Entertainment and the planned launch of the Bright edutainment OTT channel. 

BILL SONDHEIM, president, Cinedigm Entertainment Group
Sondheim became president of CEG when Cinedigm acquired Gaiam Vivendi Entertainment in 2013. Sondheim’s previous executive experience heading Sony Music Entertainment’s dual-disc technology in the mid-2000s is key to CEG expanding digital distribution to subscription stream-ing services, transactional VOD and digital-sellthrough platforms.

YOLANDA MACÍAS, EVP, acquisitions and digital sales
Macías is responsible for sourcing, evaluating, negotiating and acquiring content from independent producers and studios for all distribution platforms, including digital. Macías, who came to Cinedigm when it acquired Gaiam Vivendi Entertainment, also heads the digital video and TV sales division, overseeing forecasting, planning and analysis.

ERICK OPEKA, EVP, digital networks
Opeka directs the company’s content strategy, development and opera-tions across multiple digital platforms, including cable TV, subscription and ad-supported VOD, EST, TV and IPTV. Opeka has been responsible for growing the company to become the largest aggregator of digital content in North America.

SUZANNA LEE, VP, business development and strategy
Lee has been instrumental in Cinedigm’s evolving OTT business. She was responsible for the company’s first channel, Docurama, and negotiated the multimillion-dollar channel partnership with Wizard World for CONtv. Lee also negotiated advertising and platform deals with YuMe, Roku and others


SOFIA CHANG, EVP and GM, HBO Home Entertainment
Chang oversees the DVD and digital distribution division of HBO. She handles distribution of such hit series as “Game of Thrones” and classics such as “The Sopranos” and “Band of Brothers” in more than 70 countries. Chang holds a B.A. in English from the University of Pennsylvania.

BRANDAN LUCAS, VP, worldwide sales and business development, HBO Home Entertainment
Lucas oversees global digital sales, international physi-cal sales, and identifying and executing digital distribution opportunities for the company’s original programming around the world. Lucas has more than 12 years of industry experience in digital and physical sales. Prior to joining HBO, Lucas worked at Warner Bros.

Shout! Factory TV

GARSON FOOS, co-founder, president and GM
Garson Foos is the primary architect behind the recently launched Shout! Factory TV, the digital streaming service for cult and classic TV and movies. Foos has oversight of day-to-day operations of the company, including the expansion of Shout! Factory’s businesses in digital media, new product and business development, sales, marketing, production, acquisitions and human resources.

The Orchard

Davidson, having previously worked in Microsoft’s Xbox division, embraces the digital-first mantra of The Orchard, a company relatively new to the film business. He focuses on new and emerging opportunities such as day-and-date windowing, direct-to-consumer distribution and targeted platform-based marketing. Each film release gets an individual release strategy bolstered by a theatrical and digital lifecycle plan.

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