Three recently departed NATO executives have teamed up for a new consulting firm specializing in the theatrical industry.
The Fithian Group LLC launched Wednesday with an aim of advising the theatrical industry through the current unpredictable landscape. Be it new companies, an ever-changing definition of what qualifies as a theatrical movie or technological advancements, John Fithian, Patrick Corcoran and Jackie Brenneman plan to bring their combined 60 years of experience in navigating the new normal.
“We have spent the last couple of decades helping to guide the cinema
industry through the biggest challenges it has faced,” said Fithian, the former NATO president and CEO. “Now, having survived those challenges, we want to help our industry clients seize opportunities and grow. Digital cinema, the long fight for theatrical exclusivity, the pandemic and Hollywood going all-in on streaming – we got through all that, and now, the major Hollywood labor agreements are another signal that it is the time to build.”
Fithian stepped down as NATO president in May 2023, with Michael O’Leary stepping up to the top job. Corcoran left in June after a 24-year run. Longtime Jerry Pierce resigned in August. He alleged Brenneman — NATO’s general counsel who exited days prior — was forced out by new leadership.
“The way we work has always been about collaboration,” said Brenneman — also a founding member of the Cinema Foundation. “We extend that way of working to how we build value for our clients. In our trade association days, we knew that theater owners needed allies, whether it was other cinema owners around the world, technology companies, the creative community, or distributors, and we worked tirelessly to build those connections. They paid off in times of crisis and we believe we can leverage these partnerships to help our clients grow in times of opportunity.”
Former NATO VP and chief communications officer Corcoran added, “We have always believed that the cinema industry was essential and strong. Telling that story to the press, the public, and Wall Street has always been a priority for us. What the cinema industry needs is more: more movies, more innovation, more diversity and more investment. We will continue to tell that story on behalf of our clients in the industry.”
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