The Disney/ABC Television Group today announced that Gary Marsh has been promoted to president, Disney Channels Worldwide. He will also continue in his role as the Channel’s Chief Creative Officer. This announcement follows the decision by Carolina Lightcap to step down as president, Disney Channels Worldwide.
In this new position, Mr. Marsh will have full creative oversight and leadership responsibility for Disney’s successful and burgeoning global kids TV business, comprising more than 100 kid-driven, family inclusive entertainment channels and feeds which are available in 169 countries and 35 languages. The portfolio spans Disney Channel, Disney Junior, Disney XD, Disney Cinemagic and Hungama brands; the Radio Disney broadcast and satellite radio network and station group; as well as subscription video-on-demand and the content-rich broadband websites DisneyChannel.com, DisneyJunior.com, DisneyXD.com and RadioDisney.com. Previously, Mr. Marsh had been president, Entertainment and Chief Creative Officer, Disney Channels Worldwide.
In commenting on Mr. Marsh and his promotion, Anne Sweeney, co-chair, Disney Media Networks and president, Disney/ABC Television Group said, “Gary Marsh has been the driving creative force behind Disney Channels remarkable growth for the past 15 plus years, responsible for some of the most iconic and successful franchises in our history, including ‘Hannah Montana,’ ‘Wizards of Waverly Place,’ ‘High School Musical,’ ‘Phineas and Ferb,’ ‘That’s So Raven,’ ‘Shake It Up’ and many others.” She continued, “The evolution and growth of our Disney Channels business will come from the alignment of this great creative with strong distribution, in all its myriad forms. There is no one better suited to manage this than Gary. He not only understands the zeitgeist of kids’ culture, he helped create it. Our business couldn’t be in better hands.”
Said Mr. Marsh: “The strength of Disney Channels Worldwide – and its heart – has always been the dynamic and dedicated people who make the magic and put it into the homes and hands of kids and families around the world. These talented people who share my passion for creative excellence are the reason I’ve loved working here. And it’s also why I’m excited by this expanded opportunity to lead this team in creating and delivering content, globally, which entertains, uplifts and inspires.”
As president, Entertainment, and Chief Creative Officer, Disney Channels Worldwide, Mr. Marsh managed the worldwide Programming Strategy, Planning and Acquisitions teams, Original Movies, Original Series, Casting, Talent Relations and Production for Disney Channel U.S. and Disney XD, overseeing the development and production of a slate of original programming for Disney Channels Worldwide – both live action and animated – with original programming teams based in Burbank, London and Japan. In addition, he oversaw the development and production arms of Disney Television Animation.
His track record in developing cultural phenomena like “High School Musical,” “Hannah Montana,” “Phineas and Ferb” and “Lizzie McGuire” has been a hallmark of his success. In addition to spearheading these blockbuster Disney Channel Original Movie and Original Series franchises, he has also overseen Disney Junior programming, which includes break-out hits “Jake and the Never Land Pirates,” “Mickey Mouse Clubhouse” and “Handy Manny.”
Throughout his tenure at Disney Channel, Mr. Marsh has developed projects that have garnered the highest industry and critical acclaim, including multiple Emmys and Humanitas Prizes, plus Peabody, NAMIC, Gabriel, Women in Film, Parents’ Choice and New York International Film and Television Festival Awards. He is the co-creator and co-chair of City of Hope’s annual Concert for Hope, and was also a 2005 Honoree of Girls Incorporated, which recognizes industry leaders who are excellent role models for girls and young women.
Prior to joining Disney Channel, Mr. Marsh was director of Movies and Miniseries at Columbia Pictures Television. He was previously vice president, the Garth Group, a consulting firm in New York City, where he specialized in creating media for political campaigns.