Miramax has named veteran film executive Bill Block as its new CEO.
Block, founder and CEO of production company QED, most recently produced the comedy hit Bad Moms, which earned a surprising $184 million worldwide and is spawning a sequel. Block's move to Miramax signals that the company is looking to expand significantly beyond its more recent incarnation as a lucrative library and return to its roots as a busy producer and distributor of high-end indie fare.
Before QED, Block was president of Artisan Entertainment, a one-time Miramax rival.
More recently, Block produced the Robert De Niro-starrer Dirty Grandpa, and he will serve as an executive producer on STX's upcoming Bad Moms Christmas. His credits also include Neill Blomkamp's District 9 and Elysium, Oliver Stone's W., the Woody Allen and John Turturro-led comedy Fading Gigolo and David Ayer's Fury, starring Brad Pitt.
"Bill's extensive experience across numerous platforms, combined with his deep knowledge of the industry, makes him outstandingly qualified to propel Miramax into this new and transformative world of distribution, content and sales," Nasser Al-Khelaifi, chairman of Miramax parent company beIN Media Group, said Wednesday in a statement. "Miramax is committed to expand production and acquisitions in film and television and Bill's strong leadership will surely lead Miramax successfully into the future, and we are thrilled to have him on board."
Added Block: "Miramax is a storied brand that is poised for growth across all of its divisions - film, TV, licensing and beyond. Its library offers a wealth of opportunities for the global entertainment business that I look forward to exploring. It is an honor to helm this legacy and expand it qualitatively across all platforms including the immense growth potential across digital and in new media. Nasser Al-Khelaifi is a visionary entrepreneur and the beIN Media Group are committed to the long term horizon of media growth and evolution in the 21st century."
Acquired by beIN last year, Miramax has a library of more than 700 titles from the late 1980s to the present. There has long been talk of a deal between Miramax founder Harvey Weinstein and previous owner Colony Capital to team on productions that would mine the library, like a Shakespeare in Love sequel. But that talk never amounted to any productions. But with new owners, Miramax recently began to make a push into production and distribution. The company recently announced that it would back the Johnny Depp-Forest Whitaker police drama LAbyrinth, which it will co-finance with Open Road Films. It also acquired U.S. distribution rights to the Tonya Harding biopic I, Tonya, starring Margot Robbie.
Block will disband QED, which is typically an active player on the festival circuit, particularly at Cannes.