Jason Kilar, the CEO of WarnerMedia, has announced he will be resigning once the company’s merger with Discovery closes.
The deal that will see WarnerMedia merging with Discovery is expected to be completed soon, possibly by the end of next week. Jason Kilar, the founder of Hulu, has been CEO of the company since April 2020, seeing it through the difficult era of the Coronavirus pandemic and the launch of streaming service of HBO Max. Kilar also oversaw the pandemic-era streaming experiment, dubbed ‘Project Popcorn,’ which saw all of Warner Bros.’ 2021 movies released directly to HBO Max on the same day they were released in cinemas. It was a controversial move, which sparked a backlash from many filmmakers, including acclaimed director Christopher Nolan, who consequently severed ties with Warner Bros.
In an internal memo, Jason Kilar discussed his decision to leave, saying:
“With the pending transaction with Discovery nearing close, now is the right time to share with each of you that I will be departing this amazing company. There are many feelings one could have in a moment like this, but for me there are none bigger, or more lasting, than the feelings of gratitude and love that I have for this team, this company, and this mission. I’ve never been more fulfilled professionally. I’ve never been happier professionally.”
Kilar went on to discuss the company’s achievements:
“This team – and what we’ve built together – are the reasons for that. We’re leading the industry creatively. We’ve elevated technology, product, and design to the highest levels in the company. We’re operating as one team, proudly and successfully going direct to consumers across the globe. It has been deeply gratifying to lean into the future alongside each of you and to do so with conviction.”
David Zaslav, CEO of Discovery, is expected to take over control of the combined company, following the merger.