As expected, Walt Disney Co. has named publishing executive Michael Lynton president of its Hollywood Pictures division. He succeeds Ricardo Mestres, who resigned in April.
Lynton's appointment is unusual because of his lack of background in the film business. For the last three years, he has been senior vice president of Disney Publishing Group, where he has overseen Disney's domestic publishing operations, including Hyperion Books.
However, Lynton is also a close friend of David Hoberman, Disney's president of motion pictures, whom he will report to. Lynton will assume his new post June 27.
* Sony Pictures Entertainment has named Fred Bernstein president of Columbia TriStar Motion Picture Cos. As expected, he will team with Columbia TriStar Chairman Mark Canton in the management of Sony's motion picture operations.
* Tom Ruegger has signed a new multiyear deal as executive producer for Warner Bros. Animation.
* SI Communications has appointed Lauren Walker director of radio operations.
* Janine M. Coughlin has joined Atlantis Films' Santa Monica office as director of literary development.
* Thierry Magon de la Villehuchet, chairman and chief executive of Credit Lyonnais Securities U.S.A., is leaving the investment banking firm to pursue other activities in finance.
* Heidi Sinclair has joined the Burson-Marsteller public relations firm in Los Angeles as head of its interactive and entertainment technologies practice.
* Jerry Brown has been promoted to senior account executive for music at Lee Solters Co.
* Adeena Karsseboom has been promoted to vice president of development at Raffaella Productions.