Chris Cookson, a well-respected technology executive with both broadcast and studio experience, is leaving Warner Bros. to take the top technology executive at Sony Pictures Entertainment.
Cookson, who has served as chief technology officer of Warner Bros. Entertainment since 1999 and overseen the company’s efforts in HD DVDs and digital copy protection, has been named to the new post of president of Sony Pictures Technologies and will report to Sony Pictures Entertainment chairman and CEO Michael Lynton and co-chairman Amy Pascal.
At Sony Pictures, he will oversee the development and implementation of the studio's technology policy and processes and serve as its chief liaison with other Sony businesses in the area of technology. Sony Pictures CTO Mitch Singer and his team will report to Cookson.
"Technological changes are reshaping the business model of the entire entertainment industry, and Sony Pictures aims to be at the forefront of this revolution," Lynton said in a statement. "Chris Cookson's long career in the technological end of the entertainment business gives him the kind of wisdom and experience we need at this crucial moment in our studio's history."
Cookson, who also served as president of Warner Bros.’ technical-operations division, began his career with Warner Bros. in 1992. Previously, he served as vice president and general manager of operations and engineering for the CBS Television Network in New York and, before that, as director of the ABC and International Olympics broadcast centers.
Cookson earned a bachelor’s of science and engineering degree and a master’s of business administration from Arizona State University. He holds more than 30 U.S. patents, including several involving DVDs, and he has won two Emmy Awards.
Cookson is a fellow of the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers, a member of the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences (and served as ATAS chairman of the Engineering Awards Committee from 1995-97) and a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.