Frank Patterson, Disney Vice President, Leaving After 17 years
The Disney company has announced a change of leadership as Frank Patterson, a long-time Disney executive, has made known his decision to leave the company after almost 17 years of service.
Patterson is currently the Vice President of Sales Eastern Division.
Patterson, who worked in the theatrical distribution side of the Disney company, was taking over the family business as his father, Frank Patterson Sr. was the executive vice president and head film buyer for Loews Theatres.
It is commonplace in the film distribution realm for studio executives to have a high level of respect for the Patterson family; as they hold both Patterson men in high esteem.
The news, although disappointing due to Patterson’s long-running tenure with the company, is not entirely unwarranted or out of the blue.
With Disney’s theatrical divisions being severely impaired due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there is little surprise that the company has shifted a lot of its focus, and assets, into limiting how they handle theatrical release-and their involvement in the theatre industry as a whole- moving forward.
With a lot of the Disney Company focusing on how they can utilize their exclusive Disney+ streaming platform, it seems as though, for the foreseeable future, the Disney company will release many, if not all, of their impending films via the streaming service.
The only exception insight appears to be Marvel’s Black Widow. Bob Capek has explained before that one must wonder, however, how long Disney can remain committed to a theatrical release for the film.
The pandemic has only continued, and to follow through on the already delayed May 7th release date has the potential to underperform due to the continued theatre impedance coming from the pandemic and social restrictions.
Patterson was a very important part of the Disney team during some of their biggest victories and successes. He worked closely with Marvel, Lucasfilm, Pixar, and others; all leading to Patterson’s part in Disney recording a record $3.7 billion-dollar 2019 for their theatrical releases.
It can be assumed that this box office dominance would only have continued if the pandemic hadn’t shut down the world as we know it.
The work that Patterson had done at Miramax, Artisan, and then the Disney company, reinforce him as one of the more accomplished individuals to hold his position.
His involvement with both smashing box office successes, and Oscar-winning acclaimed films, puts him in rare air as one of the most successful the industry has to offer.