Industry Leaders To Be Honored At Press Play: Variety Home Entertainment & Digital Hall of Fame On December 8

Filmmaker Paul Feig, Comedian and Host Chris Hardwick, Redbox's Mark Horak, Lionsgate's Jim Packer and Ron Schwartz, and HBO to be honored

Nov 24, 2015, 08:15 ET from Variety

LOS ANGELES, Nov. 24, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Multi-talented creator Paul Feig, Redbox President Mark Horak and Lionsgate Co-Heads of Home Entertainment Operations Jim Packer and Ron Schwartz will be inducted into the Variety Home Entertainment & Digital Hall of Fame on December 8, 2015. Held at Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Beverly Hills, the 35th annual Variety Home Entertainment Hall of Fame gala dinner and awards show will benefit City Year Los Angeles for the third consecutive year. Chris Hardwick, CEO of Nerdist Industries and host of @Midnight with Chris Hardwick and Talking Dead, will be honored with the 2015 Entertainment and Media Award, presented by Deloitte. In addition, HBO will be presented with the Hall of Fame Innovation Award for its leadership in multiplatform distribution. Sofia Chang, EVP Worldwide Distribution & Home Entertainment, will accept the Hall of Fame Innovation Award for HBO.

"These honorees are being recognized for innovation in the in-home entertainment category," said Variety Publisher Michelle Sobrino. "The evolution of digital distribution, high definition visual media and second screen integration has enabled opportunities for content creators to enhance the quality of the customer experience. These individuals are the vanguard of our industry, taking risks to enhance the story telling experience and satisfy shifting consumer demand patterns. This group exemplifies the promise of entertainment and technology ecosystem convergence."

Paul Feig is an award-winning director, writer, producer, actor and author perhaps best known for his edgy and commercial comedies with an emphasis on strong female lead characters, which include "Spy," "The Heat" and Academy Award-nominated "Bridesmaids." He co-wrote and is directing a reboot of "Ghostbusters" with a female-led cast that includes his four-time collaborator Melissa McCarthy and Kristen Wiig. Feig recently collaborated with YAHOO on the original series "Other Space," which premiered in the spring of 2015, and marks Feig's return to television. A three-time EMMY nominated writer/director and DGA Award winner, Feig is also known for solely creating the beloved and critically acclaimed series "Freaks and Geeks" and serving as director and co-executive producer of "The Office."

Mark Horak is a 20-year home entertainment veteran, who since 2014 has led Redbox as its President. He previously served for almost two decades at Warner Bros. in capacities including President of the Americas for Warner Bros. Home Entertainment. During his tenure, he helped the studio to develop new physical and digital formats, geographic markets and business models. Horak also is recognized for his leadership in establishing the Los Angeles Entertainment Summit, an important annual industry event that benefits the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, where he serves as the chairman of the advisory board for the Los Angeles branch.

Jim Packer and Ron Schwartz run Lionsgate's worldwide home entertainment business, a leader in DVD, VOD and digital-to-box office conversion rates.  The Company is a first mover in customizing home entertainment release strategies for its content, which includes a film slate driven by branded tent-poles such as the global blockbuster Hunger Games and Divergent franchises.

Chris Hardwick, comedian, actor, TV host, author, writer, producer, and podcaster, will be honored with the 2015 Entertainment and Media Award, presented by Deloitte. Hardwick currently serves as founder, CEO and creative head of Legendary Entertainment's Nerdist Industries, encompassing, a YouTube channel, and the incredibly successful Nerdist Podcast. He is also host of Comedy Central's Emmy Award-winning nightly game show @Midnight with Chris Hardwick, as well as host of AMC's popular The Walking Dead wrap-up show, Talking Dead. Hardwick will next be seen as host and co-executive producer, alongside LeBron James, of NBC's new game show series The Wall.

The 2015 Innovation Award recognizes HBO's history of leveraging its award-winning programming to serve consumers with new distribution formats. The company's groundbreaking moves into multiplatform delivery, including the HBO Now standalone Internet streaming service and HBO Go authenticated Internet video service, are just the most recent manifestations of the company's decades-long commitment to building new home entertainment formats including premium cable, DVD and Blu-ray.

For more information about Variety's Home Entertainment & Digital Hall of Fame Gala, please go online to

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About City Year
City Year is an education-focused, nonprofit organization founded in 1988 that partners with public schools to provide full-time targeted intervention for students most at risk of dropping out. In 25 communities across the United States and in 25 Los Angeles schools, teams of young AmeriCorps members support students by focusing on attendance, behavior, and course performance through in-class tutoring, mentoring, and after school programs that keep kids in school and on track to graduate.

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