If you can't beat them, hire them? Dawn Hudson has run Film Independent since 1991, overseeing the L.A. Film Festival and the annual Independent Spirit Awards, held the day before the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences puts people to sleep with its Oscars broadcast. Now Hudson will be CEO of the academy, and longtime executive administrator Ric Robertson will be promoted to chief operating officer. "The move can be viewed as bringing Hudson's outside perspective to an organization long on tradition, and one that has sometimes struggled (particularly with the Oscar show) to attract a younger audience," says The Wrap.
Anne Thompson at IndieWire: "She will bring many changes to the Academy. First and foremost, Hudson is not an autocratic leader like [departing executive director Bruce] Davis, who ruled with a stern hand....One reason Hudson landed the job is that she’s a strong manager, a listener, and consensus builder who has effectively run her organization, mounted an annual film festival, raised sponsorships and put on a live Indie Spirit Awards show. She’s respected, authoritative, well-liked.“