Wanda's Gillian Zhao Joins Warner Bros
Warner Bros has appointed its first country manager for China, hiring Gillian Zhao as EVP and MD.
Zhao joins from Wanda Culture Group, where she was CEO of Wanda Pictures, China’s biggest privately owned film company, and senior assistant to the president.
She has also worked at Bona Film, Celestial Entertainment and Star TV.
Press release in full below:
Gillian Zhao Named Executive Vice President And Managing Director, Warner Bros. China
(August 16, 2016 – Burbank, CA and London, UK) – Chinese entertainment and tech industry veteran Gillian Zhao has been named Executive Vice President and Managing Director, Warner Bros. China, becoming the company’s first-ever country manager for China, it was announced today by Kevin Tsujihara, Chairman and CEO, Warner Bros.
In this newly created position, Zhao will have general oversight of all of Warner Bros.’ businesses in China, including theatrical distribution, television distribution, home entertainment, consumer products, games, and emerging distribution technologies. She will work closely with in-place executives in each of these divisions to fully optimize every opportunity to grow Warner Bros.’ operations in China. Additionally, she’ll report to and work with Richard Fox, Warner Bros.’ Executive Vice President of International, to explore new opportunities and partnerships for the company.
“Gillian is a multi-faceted executive with a great background across the entertainment and tech sectors in China,” said Tsujihara. “As we look to expand all of our businesses in China, Gillian’s know-how, experience and contacts will give us a competitive advantage. We’re pleased to welcome her to the Warner Bros. family and look forward to her leading our efforts in this market full of incredible opportunities and to continue to grow with the Chinese entertainment industry.”
“Gillian is well-known and well-respected in the Chinese entertainment business,” said Fox. “She’s a great addition to our team and will bring us a more market-oriented and localized approach. I can’t wait to start working with her.”
“The Warner Bros. name is synonymous with first-class entertainment, in China and around the world,” said Zhao. “I’m excited and honored to be named to this post and look forward to taking the company’s in-country operations to the next level. Warner Bros. has the brands, characters and films that resonate with and are so loved by Chinese audiences, so we have unlimited potential and opportunity in this high-growth market.”
Prior to joining Warner Bros., Zhao most recently served as Senior Assistant to the President of Wanda Culture Group and CEO of Wanda Pictures. During this time, Wanda Pictures grew into China’s top privately owned film company, with more than $1 billion in box office in 2015. Before that, she worked at Bona Film Group and Celestial Entertainment China. She has also held senior executive posts at Star TV (China) Co. Ltd. Starting in 1987, Zhao spent nearly two decades working in tech, including as Managing Director of Apple China, Deputy GM of Microsoft China, Channel Marketing Manager for IBM China and a 10-year stint at China Hewlett Packard Co.
Source: Warner Bros.