Sony Pictures Animation President Kristine Belson has renewed her contract to continue running the Oscar-winning film division, the studio announced on Wednesday.
In addition to re-upping her deal, Belson will also expand her responsibilities to include producing animated series for TV and streaming. Belson’s new title is president of Sony Pictures Animation, Features and Series. She will continue to report to Sony’s motion picture group chairman Tom Rothman.
On the television side, Belson will liaise with Sony Pictures TV Chairman Mike Hopkins and work with Chris Parnell and Jason Clodfelter, co-presidents of Sony Pictures TV Studios, on some projects.
“For the last few years, Sony Pictures Animation has thrived under Kristine’s expert leadership,” Rothman said. “Under her watch, we’ve seen ‘Hotel Transylvania’ grow to a $1.3 billion franchise and the team win their first-ever Oscar for ‘Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse.’ Our animation business has never been healthier, and we are excited she will be expanding her talents into the tv and streaming space.”
Under Belson’s leadership, the animation studio’s overall output has increased considerably as have the production of original and filmmaker-driven projects. Belson is currently overseeing over a dozen projects in active development across the studio including the Phil Lord and Chris Miller-produced original animated comedy, “The Mitchells vs. The Machines” from director Mike Rianda; the studio’s first-ever animated musical, “Vivo,” featuring all-new original songs by Lin Manuel-Miranda; a reimagining of the fan-favorite animated series “The Boondocks” for HBO Max with original creator Aaron McGruder; and an Elvis-inspired adult animated comedy for Netflix, “Agent King.”
“All of us at Sony Pictures Animation are thrilled to be getting into new territory by expanding our animation slate to include serialized stories, for every audience,” Belson said. “I am so grateful to have been given the opportunity to do things that no other theatrical animation studio in Hollywood is doing, and we have a lot in store.”
Prior to Belson’s appointment at Sony Pictures Animation in 2015, she spent nearly a decade at DreamWorks Animation where she executive-produced “How to Train Your Dragon” and, most recently, produced “The Croods.” She came to DreamWorks Animation with more than 15 years of experience developing and producing both live-action and animated films, with eight of those years as executive vice president of production at the Jim Henson Company.
“Kristine is an incredibly talented executive, and she’s done a fantastic job at Sony Pictures Animation,” Hopkins said. “In addition to overseeing an exciting film slate, we are thrilled that she will also channel her energy on creating hit television.”
Variety was first to report the news of Belson’s contract renewal.