Illumination Founder Chris Meledandri Joins Nintendo Board of Directors


(Photo by Kevin Winter / Getty Images)

During Nintendo annual meeting of shareholders, the Q&A revealed that Chris Meledandri, founder and CEO of Oscar-nominated Illumination Entertainment, has been added to the company’s board of directors.

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During the meeting, Nintendo Representative Director and President Shuntaro Furukawa was asked, “What kind of impact on Nintendo’s future do you expect from the appointment of Chris Meledandri as External Director? Nintendo’s core business is its dedicated video game platform business for embedded hardware and software, and for the continued growth of this business, your core strategy is to increase the number of people with access to intellectual property. Nintendo in areas such as visual content and theme parks. With the appointment of Mr. Meledandri, will the field of visual content occupy a more important place for Nintendo?

In his response, Furukawa explained:

“Chris Meledandri is the founder of Illumination Entertainment and has experience as a producer who has created many films including Despicable Me franchise, which introduced the Minions. He has gained extensive experience and insight as a business manager and in the entertainment industry, so we expect that he will appropriately oversee our management from an objective point of view while providing valuable advice to our management. . Mr. Meledandri has been appointed as an independent, non-executive external director, so he will not be directly involved in the executive of operations. However, we believe that his vast experience and knowledge in the entertainment industry will have a beneficial effect on the decision making of our Board of Directors.

“Regarding the expansion of visual content, we are working on Super Mario film and announced that other projects are also underway. As you pointed out, our core business is the video game platform activity dedicated to embedded hardware and software. But for this business to continue to thrive and grow, we need to create opportunities where even people who don’t normally play on video game systems can come into contact with Nintendo characters. As part of this effort, visual content could be important to us.

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Moreover, the interrogator also asked to hear the thoughts of the director representing Shigeru Miyamoto, claiming that he appears to have a leadership position in this area. Miyamoto added:

“While this has no direct connection to his appointment as director, I have worked with Chris for over five years now on the Super Mario movie. Through this relationship, I think he really understood Nintendo’s point of view. I don’t think it’s easy for those involved in media making overseas to understand Nintendo’s way of thinking, but Chris really understands why Nintendo creates characters and visual content.

“We are working on mobile and visual content to expand our integrated hardware-software business globally. Working on mobile content has reminded us yet again that while Nintendo game consoles may have reached certain parts of the world, there are many places where they are not prevalent. We started the mobile business because we thought it was very important to do activities that encourage people to understand the Nintendo brand and love Nintendo. This raised awareness of the importance of visual content. By owning video content and not just games, Nintendo will be able to expand its content across the world and become stronger as a business. The fact that we are a video game development company tends to create the mistaken impression that we can also create movies easily. It’s true that the visual content creation and game development processes share some of the same ways of thinking, but there are differences as well.

Miyamoto concluded by saying that the film industry, including distribution, is going through a period of transformation, and that Meledandri’s contribution will be of great help to Nintendo in the future thanks to her “years of experience. at Hollywood “.

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