Christine Birch has resigned her post as Sony Pictures president of domestic marketing after a two-week probe into her workplace behavior, including reports that she smoked marijuana at the office, insiders told TheWrap.
Official word of her resignation came down from Sony’s marketing chief Josh Greenstein on Wednesday, who said Birch originally approached him about resigning in January.
In late March, Variety reported that Birch’s marketing subordinates had filed complaints about her behavior — including that she vaped marijuana during work hours, despite numerous warnings to stop.
Multiple individuals familiar with the workplace downplayed the seriousness of the investigation. Birch was asked to take time off during the probe, one of the insiders said, but was never formally suspended.
That individual, and a second one who spoke to TheWrap, speculated that the press leak likely came from Birch’s staff in an attempt to force her resignation. Andre Caraco, co-president of domestic marketing, will fill Birch’s shoes for now.
Greenstein applauded her recent successes like the record-setting “Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle” and “Spider-Man: Homecoming.”
Birch herself thanked studio head Tom Rothman and Greenstein, saying “I’m very proud of the team and I’m incredibly grateful … now, I’m ready for a new challenge.”
Read the full memo obtained by TheWrap:
Following an extraordinarily impressive run in Columbia’s Domestic Marketing department, Christine Birch is stepping down from her post as President of Domestic Marketing.
Christine approached us about leaving in January 2018, following the record-setting performance of Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle. Under her tenure, Sony’s domestic marketing department produced some of its best results in years, including Spider-Man: Homecoming, The Magnificent Seven, Peter Rabbit, and Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle.
Below is a short note from Christine regarding her departure:
“The transformation of the Columbia Pictures marketing department has been one of the most rewarding chapters of my career. I’m very proud of the team and I’m incredibly grateful to Tom Rothman and Josh Greenstein for supporting my vision. Now, I’m ready for a new challenge.”
Christine’s direct reports will report to Andre Caraco, Co-President of Domestic Marketing, on an interim basis.
Please join me in thanking Christine for her hard work and dedication to Sony Pictures, and in wishing her all the best in the next chapter of her career.