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MGM’s Pam Abdy, Michael De Luca to depart as Amazon shakes up film group

Pam Abdy and Michael De Luca

The heads of MGM’s motion picture group, Michael De Luca and Pam Abdy, are set to depart the company this summer, becoming the first high-profile exits since Amazon completed its US$8.45bn acquisition of the James Bond studio last month.

Chairman De Luca and president Abdy arrived at MGM just prior to the onset of the pandemic and oversaw film projects from the likes of Ridley Scott, Paul Thomas Anderson, Ron Howard and George Miller, in addition to navigating the challenges of releasing the James Bond film No Time to Die amid global theatre closures.

During their tenure, MGM also picked up its first Academy Award nomination for more than 30 years.

De Luca and Abdy confirmed their departures in an internal memo on Wednesday, writing: “A little over two years ago, we came to MGM to help restore its vibrancy among the storied studios of the last century and we are proud to say, thanks to all of you and your efforts, it is mission accomplished.

“With our goal achieved, and as we look ahead, we feel now is the right time for us to move on and explore our next chapter and challenge,” said the pair.

“We are confident the exciting vision Prime Video and Amazon Studios has for MGM and the organisation Mike Hopkins is building along with Jennifer Salke and team will guarantee MGM’s continued success.”

Exactly where the pair will land next has not yet been announced, but rumours have linked De Luca with a potential move to Warner Bros Discovery.

In a staff note sent shortly after De Luca and Abdy’s memo, Mike Hopkins, senior VP of Prime Video and Amazon Studios, said the company was planning to expand MGM’s existing investment in feature films.

“As I said at our town hall in March, nurturing MGM’s legacy of quality storytelling is a top priority,” he wrote. “MGM has indeed become a home for great storytellers. And this home is only going to expand, as we invest and work together to release an even larger theatrical slate in the years ahead. Doing this requires an amazing team, and the more we get to know you all, the more impressed we are.

“Mike and Pam will depart this summer, which will allow us to continue the phased and measured approach to integration with Prime Video and Amazon Studios. Meanwhile, the current interim structure remains in place.”

Under the interim structure, revealed last month, MGM chief operating officer Christopher Brearton, MGM Worldwide Television chairman Mark Burnett and De Luca joined the leadership team reporting to Hopkins.

News of De Luca and Abdy’s departure comes six weeks after Amazon completed its takeover of MGM. With the deal, Amazon picked up MGM’s library consisting of more than 4,000 film titles and 17,000 TV episodes. The mega-deal was initially announced in May 2021 and took around 10 months to clear all regulatory hurdles and closing conditions.


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