Dan Lin will not take on the role of DC film and television boss at Warner Bros. discovery
Producer Dan Lin at the premiere of Warner Bros. Pictures “The Lego Batman” at the Regency Village Theater on February 4, 2017 in Westwood, California.
Todd Williamson | Getty Images Entertainment | Getty Images
Film producer Dan Lin, who was in talks to head Warner Bros. Discovery, DC Comics’ film and television division, will not take on the job after all, according to people familiar with the matter.
Both sides ended negotiations without reaching an agreement.
The news comes at a turbulent time for the newly formed Warner Bros. discovery. CEO David Zaslav has been trying to remake WarnerMedia since its merger with Discovery in April, including layoffs and removal of content from streaming service HBO Max. Shares have fallen about 50% since the merger closed.
After discussing a potential offer from Warner Bros., Lin decided to stay with Rideback, the film and television company he founded and runs. He has produced films such as The Lego Movie and the two-part adaptation of Stephen King’s It.
Representative from Warner Bros. Discovery declined to comment. Lin could not be contacted for comment.
The 49-year-old film producer was favorite for the role, with the expectation that Lin would report directly to Zaslav and bypass the heads of HBO and HBO Max divisions, Warner Bros. TV and Warner Bros. images. Contract discussions ran into complications due to Lin’s ownership of Rideback and the way Warner Bros. Discovery will compensate him for this, two of the people said.
The two sides exchanged terms and conditions, and Lin wanted Rideback to continue with the WBD’s stake, one of the sources said. Both sides decided to move on after talks stalled, one source said.
Zaslav is looking for someone to stabilize the ship in DC’s film department, home to superheroes like Wonder Woman and Superman, as Warner Bros. Discovery aims to capture the continued success enjoyed by Disney’s Marvel Studios.
Warner Bros. recently pushed back the Aquaman sequel, which was supposed to release in March 2023, to December 2023. facing multiple allegations, including childcare. Zaslav pulled the nearly finished Batgirl off the HBO Max release list, allowing the company to write off taxes.
In April, it was reported that Zaslav approached Emma Watts, former top executive of 20th Century Studios and Paramount to take up the mantle, but this Watts didn’t accept the job. According to one source, Warner Bros. Discovery is talking to several other candidates for the position. According to another person, Zaslav personally met with Lin, trying to convince him to take this job.
Zaslav recently spoke about his desire to build a “long-term, much stronger and sustainable growth business from DC” that focuses on quality. The executive is eyeing a reboot of the DC Cinematic Universe that will set a 10-year blueprint for the franchise.
In July, Zaslav brought in Hollywood producer Alan Horn to act as a consultant to help the CEO navigate the movie business. Horn, a respected Disney executive and veteran, worked for The Walt Disney Company when it began shaping the Marvel Cinematic Universe and the reboot of the Star Wars franchise.
He also helped bring The Hobbit films to the big screen, as well as the eight-film Harry Potter franchise and Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight trilogy.