DC Entertainment president Diane Nelson will not be returning to Warner Bros. after all. The executive will be ending a 22-year career with the studio after taking a leave of absence in March. She and her team have been responsible for overseeing all DC Comics-related divisions at Warner Bros., including DC Comics itself as well as the newly-restructured DC Films division.
Nelson's credits with Warner Bros. include the development of multiple franchises in addition to DC Entertainment. She helped develop the Harry Potter brand under Warner Bros. in the early 2000s along with helping turn the DC TV universe into the ratings power house for the CW, not to mention heading up Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment - the studio's video game arm which has developed games such as the Batman: Arkham series, Mortal Kombat, and Mad Max, among other titles. Of course, she also oversaw DC Comics, in which Geoff Johns runs as president. It's clear that Nelson has served as a focal point for all DC content, building it into the brand that it has become today, but not she's stepping down from her position.
THR reports that Diane Nelson only recently decided not to return to DC Entertainment, following her leave of absence which was to tend to family-related issues. She reported her decision to Warner Bros. CEO Kevin Tsujihara, who wished her the very best, signalling his support for her future professional endeavors. Tsujihara said in a statement:
"Diane has been a friend and colleague as well as a valued member of the Warner Bros. family for more than 20 years, Throughout her tenure, her leadership and contributions have helped shape the way the studio operates today, and we’re better for having had her on our team. While we're sad she’ll be leaving us, we completely respect and support her decision. Whatever her next chapter holds, I know she'll make it amazing."
The plans that Warner Bros. put into place during Diane Nelson's absence will remain in place for the interim. Thomas Gewecke, who is chief digital officer and executive vice president of strategy and business development, will continue to oversee DC Comics' executive management team of Dan DiDio, Jim Lee, Geoff Johns, and Amit Desai. Warner Bros. Consumer Products president Pam Lifford will be reporting to Kevin Tsujihara. Nelson spoke about her decision to leave the company, also sharing her excitement for what the future holds with the world:
?Warner Bros. has been my home for over 20 years with a wide variety of incredible professional experiences. The last nine — rebuilding and managing DC Entertainment — have been a particular highlight and privilege. With the support and talents of our staff and creators, I am proud to leave DC even stronger than when I joined it. I will miss everyone — particularly my executive management team — without whom none of our achievements could have been realized. And I am excited to take on my next professional adventure."
Diane Nelson's sudden decision to leave DC Entertainment is significant, not only in the interim but also for the company's future. Nelson was majorly responsible for turning DC Entertainment around and turning the company into a powerhouse in 2009 and beyond. Plus, the work she did at Warner Bros. over the past two decades has helped establish some of the biggest entertainment franchise this century.
So, while Diane Nelson leaving DC Entertainment is unexpected, she's done an incredible job at leaving the company with a very bright future - in all aspects of entertainment, not just in comics or film. Now, it's just a matter of finding a permanent replacement for her.