Variety reports that Apple TV+ head of film marketing strategy JP Richards has resigned only after a year. Richards joined Apple in January 2021 and was reporting to Apple’s head of video marketing Chris Van Amburg.
Before joining Apple, Richards worked at Warner Bros as co-president in worldwide marketing where he work on movies like “Wonder Woman”, “The Lego Movie”, “A Star Is Born” and “Aquaman”. And prior to WB, he worked at Universal Pictures for 12 years where he headed the digital campaigns for blockbuster franchises like “Despicable Me”, “Fast and Furious”, and “Jason Bourne”.
Earlier this week, Apple Director of Machine Learning (ML), Ian Goodfellow resigned over the company’s return-to-office hybrid policy after three years. He said that policy was not flexible enough for his team.
Apple TV+ head of film marketing strategy departs amidst claims of mismanagement and poor leadership structure
According to the report, Richards notified his team of his decision earlier this week. Sources said that he is “circling several new opportunities” and his successor will be appointed in the coming weeks. Under his leadership, Apple streamer debuted multiple hit original films, including the Oscar-winning movie “CODA”.
During his tenure, the studio released films including Tom Holland’s “Cherry,” the landmark best picture Oscar winner “CODA,” Tom Hanks’ sci-fi adventure “Finch,” the staged musical “Come From Away,” and the Mahershala Ali drama “Swan Song.”
However, there might be other reasons for his departure. Previously, a report by Business Insider claimed that Apple TV+ faces mismanagement and lack of resources issues which have frustrated its content partners. Current and former executive and staff members reported that the streamer has a poor and “very flat” leadership structure, and the “key departments, like marketing and publicity, don’t communicate enough, leaving partners to juggle multiple points of contact.”
Sources alleged that streamer’s marketing campaigns lacked proper planning and effective execution. One anonymous executive said:
Other sources said that Apple TV+ has a chaotic approach to marketing, including “disruptive, last-minute marketing planning for projects that have been in the works for months; sloppy press rollouts; landing pages for series that weren’t ready in time.” “They are still marketing like it’s an iPhone, not content.”
It is likely that Apple TV+ was not a fit for Richards who is not exploring other opportunities.