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Disney Veteran Gary Marsh Stepping Down To Launch New Production Company

Gary Marsh Disney
Gary Marsh (Image credit: Disney Enterprises/Richard Harbaugh)

The Walt Disney Co. announced that Gary Marsh is stepping down as president and chief creative officer of Disney Branded Television at the end of the year to launch his own production company.

In 33 years at Disney, Marsh helped develop franchises including High School Musical and Hannah Montana, shows like Lizzie McGuire, Descendants, Phineas and Ferb, and That’s So Raven and the Disney Junior cable network

A replacement for Marsh was not named. Marsh will be helping with the transition.

Marsh’s new production company is being backed by a multi-year deal with Disney General Entertainment. It will create content for Disney TV and streaming platforms. 

“Gary’s leadership and creative genius have shaped a generation of beloved kids and family programming, and we are forever grateful for the indelible impact he’s made at The Walt Disney Company,” said Peter Rice, chairman, Disney General Entertainment. “Gary is a valued leader and good friend, and we’ve been talking about this move for years. So when he decided to focus solely on producing after three decades of an amazing executive career, I jumped at the opportunity to keep him among us.”

Marsh will be finalizing projects that will be developed by his new company, including two Descendants movies and the prequel to Beauty and the Beast. Also in Marsh’s pipeline are Tink, School for Sensitive Souls and Witch Mountain. 

“For 33 years, I’ve had the greatest job in television,” Marsh said. “The stories we’ve told, the music we’ve created, the stars we’ve discovered, the franchises we’ve built – all of it has entertained and engaged millions of kids and families around the globe. Thanks to the reach of Disney’s streaming platforms, those stories will live forever in the hearts and minds of future generations, alongside all the new stories I look forward to telling. There simply could not be a more compelling or creatively stimulating time to enter the production ranks.”

Jon Lafayette

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting + Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.