We've Got Hollywood Covered
|

Hulu President Kelly Campbell Exits, in Talks for Senior Peacock Role

Campbell is in discussions to take over for the recently-departed Gidon Katz

(Story updated at 12:15 p.m. PT)

Hulu president Kelly Campbell has left the company “effective immediately,” TheWrap has confirmed.

Her direct reports will temporarily report to Rebecca Campbell, chairman, international operations and direct-to-consumer, until a replacement is named, a person with knowledge of the plans said. 

Less than two hours after news broke of Campbell’s departure, the Wall Street Journal reported that she was in talks for a “senior role” at NBCUniversal, citing people familiar with the matter. The Journal added that talks are very preliminary and that it could be to replace Gidon Katz, who resigned as NBCU’s president of direct-to-consumer last week.

Reps for NBCU declined to comment.

Campbell had been with Hulu for four years. She was named president in 2020. Staff was first informed via a memo on Monday, which was obtained by Puck News’ Matt Belloni. He posted the memo on Twitter.

Campbell replaced Randy Freer, who himself exited amid a reorganization last year that had consolidated the streaming service’s operations under Disney’s direct-to-consumer and international unit, which was then run by Kevin Mayer. Freer had been the streaming company’s CEO since 2017.

Prior to Hulu, Campbell spent 12 years at Google in various leadership and marketing roles across the Google Ads and Google Cloud.

Campbell leaves Hulu as the streaming service continues to be further aligned under Disney, which took control of Hulu via its $71.3 billion deal for Fox. Disney and Comcast, which still maintains its 33% stake in the streaming service, are headed for a messy divorce as the two argue over the value of Hulu ahead of a likely split in 2024, when Disney is on the hook to buy out Comcast’s stake.

The value of Hulu has been hotly debated this year between the two. According to report earlier this year in The Information, the two companies are in arbitration over just how much Hulu is worth, stemming from Comcast’s unhappiness with Disney’s decision to pull back on its planned international rollout of Hulu in favor of launching a streaming service under the brand name Star, another asset acquired in the Fox deal.

Comcast has accused Disney of making moves like that to depreciate the value of Hulu and stop funding Hulu’s operations (which could lower Comcast’s ownership stake), according to The Information. For its part, Disney has argued that it chose the Star name overseas due to complicated licensing agreements and the lack of brand recognition for Hulu outside the U.S.

When the time comes for Disney to pay up, independent experts will set the valuation of Hulu in the buyout, based on its fair market value.