Former Sony Pictures executive Marisa Liston has been hired to be the Lionsgate’s new head of global earned media and communications for the film and motion picture group, the studio announced on Monday.
Liston previously served as executive vice president of publicity for Sony. Liston will oversee a combination of three areas for Lionsgate: domestic and international feature film publicity, Lionsgate film and branded social media strategy, and strategy for the film and the motion picture group communications.
Liston will report to Damon Wolf, president of worldwide marketing for Lionsgate’s Motion Picture Group.
“We hit the jackpot with Marisa,” Wolf said in a statement. “I can’t think of a more effective marketing executive whose knowledge and leadership will ensure the seamless transition in taking three separate core pillars of feature film marketing to create one central communications hub within Lionsgate’s global marketing division. This major initiative Marisa is leading will not only have an enormous impact on the motion picture group and the success of our films, but throughout the entire Lionsgate Entertainment 360 ecosystem.
“Her exceptional track record has been proven time and again with wildly successful campaigns covering every conceivable genre of film. Together, Marisa and I are absolutely aligned in believing that it is imperative to continually reinvent the way we communicate, gain visibility, deploy talent and message our movies in a rapidly changing and expanding media environment,” he continued. “But besides all that, no one, and I mean no one has a more infectious laugh or a smile that can turn a bad day around or make a good day better.”
Liston will quickly jump into Lionsgate’s 2019 film slate beginning with the Seth Rogen and Charlize Theron romantic comedy, “Long Shot,” which recently premiered to some fanfare at South by Southwest, winning the film festival’s Audience Award and opens in theaters May 3.
The studio said that Liston will help the global marketing strategy of upcoming films including “John Wick: Chapter 3 — Parabellum,” “Angel Has Fallen,” Sylvester Stallone’s “Rambo: Last Blood,” Rian Johnson’s “Knives Out,” and Jay Roach’s yet-to-be-titled Roger Ailes scandal film starring Charlize Theron, Nicole Kidman and Margot Robbie.
Liston led some of Sony’s biggest blockbuster campaigns during her 17 years at the studio, including the Academy Award-winning animated feature “Spider-Man: Into the Spiderverse,” and some of Sony’s most recent hits, “Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle,” “Venom,” “Hotel Transylvania 3” and “Spider-Man: Homecoming,” among others.
“After 17 years at Sony, I honestly wasn’t looking for another studio job but Lionsgate is not looking to do things like other studios,” Liston said in a statement. “Damon and Joe expect me to push boundaries in a meaningful way, being bolder in our strategies, more creative in our execution, and to innovate and challenge the traditional PR paradigms.”
“What works, works for a reason, but what doesn’t isn’t changing fast enough,” she continued. “I am excited by the amazing slate Lionsgate has in place, the forward thinking approach it is taking in the global marketing division and I cant wait to work with the current staff and the many filmmakers and artists I’ve worked so closely with in the past. For me this feels like an opportunity I couldn’t find anywhere but Lionsgate.”
Prior to Joining Sony, Liston worked at Baker-Winoker-Ryder, and briefly worked at 20th Century Fox.