When WarnerMedia dropped the shocking news on Monday, President and CEO Kevin Tsujihara went down, a name was on everyone's lips: Stacey Snider.
The time is almost scary. Snider, a well-liked and respected executive, has run Universal Pictures, DreamWorks and is currently chairman and CEO of 20th Century Fox. In addition, she will be out of a job when the merger with Disney finishes this week.
Several insiders told TheWrap that Snider is the most obvious candidate outside Warner Bros to take over the leadership position. In October, it was reported that she would not join Disney. And she is a female leader at the age of #MeToo.
"[Stacey] makes full meaning. It's just obvious. It's too perfect, says one veteran industry leader who echoes other people's feelings.
"I think Stacey would be a good choice, or maybe someone from the outside, giving a new view of the big picture and all the new and evolving companies out there," another industry manager said.
Snider's lame duck status has been a board game and studio waterhole theme since the end of last year, when it was clear that Disney did not give her a position. At TheWrap & # 39; s Grill Event in October, said industrial analyst Roy Salter that Snider could write his own ticket. "Stacey knows how to handle content as to facilitate positive societal impact on the world," TheWrap told. "In the upcoming media and entertainment changes, That kind of professional unlimited opportunity. "
But it also requires a rare opening in management positions in Hollywood's largest companies.
A spokesman for WarnerMedia refused to comment on the company's statement that temporary management would be announced on Tuesday. Snider refused to comment on TheWrap.
If Snider was interested in the job, she has a strong executive on her side. Peter Chernin, whose Otter Media was funded and then originally purchased by AT & T last year, is a trusted advisor to WarnerMedia CEO John Stankey, and has an agreement with the Fox Party overseen by Snider.
Said one of veteran leaders, "Peter Chernin is a very strong guy, and he has a lot of swing with the guys out there at AT&T."
AT&T completed his acquisition of Time Warner at $ 85 billion, and made the two companies of WarnerMedia.
When they were in Fox, Snider will bring in Chernin's company to produce and work on movies – he knows that if he gets her into the Warner Bros, Chernin Entertainment will have opportunities, according to the practice.
A spokesman for Chernin told TheWrap that he was not involved in WarnerMedia plans to replace Tsujihara.
Another insider told TheWrap that the studio had to be stabilized before a female leader boarded. It gives room for Toby Emmerich, head of Warner Bros. Pictures Group, to rise – at least temporarily.
The decision that Tsujihara should go down came over the weekend. In a note on Monday, Stankey said that a temporary management structure would be announced on Tuesday.
Two business insiders said that they do not assume that Emmerich entered into the role for good.
"It would be hard to do," he said. "He's so creative and he had to give a lot of it to handle home entertainment, the business side and everything else Kevin did. Don't know if that's the right move, but I think he could definitely do it."
Former leader of Sony Pictures Entertainment Amy Pascal would also be the candidate to take over the post, even though she has formed her own company, Pascal Pictures, and still works as a producer of Sony films such as "Spider-Man: Far From Home" and Greta Gerwigs " Little Women. "
Tsujihara, who has been working for two decades at the studio and served as a leader for the past six years, has denied any wrongdoing related to his past intimate relationship with actor Charlotte Kirk, March 8, after The Hollywood Reporter published texts between the two who indicated, she sought her help in obtaining actors, while he wrote a note to the employees where he said he had deeply regretted "wrong."
When Disney announced it would get Fox, it became clear that Snider would not take it. In the fall, TheWrap case wrote about potential landing sites for executives who have been successful on films such as "Deadpool", "Hidden Figures" and "The Great Showman." Insiders told TheWrap in October that she would look at working with another large studio, but nothing was out there – until now.
"Her first thought will always work in a studio," a studio director TheWrap said at that time. "I'm sure she'll wait for a studio, I just don't know what's out there."