How Disney’s Kareem Daniel Became the Most Powerful Figure in Hollywood You’ve Never Heard Of

·1-min read

One of the most powerful executives in all of Hollywood was a virtual unknown this time last year. In fact, he still might be. In one of his first major moves as Disney CEO last October, Bob Chapek plucked longtime ally Kareem Daniel from the consumer products and games division to run the newly created Media and Entertainment Distribution group. Known internally as “DMED,” Daniel’s team is in charge of the operation of Disney’s streaming services and TV networks, in addition to profit-and-loss management and all distribution, operations, sales, advertising, data and technology functions of all Disney content. Which means that the 47-year-old engineer-turned-corporate honcho is responsible for the entire business side of Disney content. “Kareem Daniel now runs the business,” a former Disney executive, speaking on condition of anonymity, told TheWrap. “Kareem is Chapek’s guy.” The reorganization has handed immense power to an executive who studied electrical engineering at Stanford and then began his career as an investment banker for Goldman Sachs, and has no experience in creating content. It has also created internal tension, notably with Peter Rice, the chairman of general entertainment content, the group responsible for Disney’s TV and episodic streaming content, according to two individuals...

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