Former Disney Chairman Dick Cook to Keynote Biola Media Conference on May 1 at CBS Studios

Apr. 12, 2010 By Jenna Bartlo

For the past 15 years, the annual Biola Media Conference has hosted some of the biggest lights in Hollywood's firmament to speak to fellow media professionals about the entertainment business. And this year is no exception–graced with not one, but two, of the most successful executives in Disney history.

The Biola Media Conference is proud to announce the addition of Disney luminary and former Chairman of The Walt Disney Studios, Dick Cook.

“To host a man of Dick’s stature on the heels of navigating one of the most beloved film brands in history affords us an unprecedented, candid opportunity to learn from a true media giant,” states Jack Hafer, chairman of Biola’s Cinema and Media Arts Department.

As a 38-year Disney veteran, Dick Cook oversaw all aspects of the development, production, distribution and marketing for all live-action and animated films released under the Walt Disney Pictures, Touchstone Pictures, Hollywood Pictures and Miramax banners worldwide. He was also responsible for Disney's worldwide home entertainment operations, as well as Walt Disney Music Group, Walt Disney Theatrical Productions, Disney-ABC Domestic and International Television, among other areas.

"I have loved every minute of my 38 years that I have worked at Disney ... from the beginning as a ride operator on Disneyland's steam train and monorail to my position as chairman of The Walt Disney Studios,” stated Cook.

Under Cook’s leadership, Walt Disney Studios has been one of the leading global distributors achieving numerous milestones, which include releasing 60 films that have grossed more than $100 million each domestically. No other studio has accomplished this extraordinary feat. Additionally, Cook has been at the forefront of the digital cinema boom. In 2005, he and his team brought together Dolby Laboratories, ILM and Real D for the successful deployment of 3D-enabled digital cinema systems and the first digital 3D premiere with the motion picture “Chicken Little” in Disney Digital 3D™.  Since then, Disney has released more digital 3D movies then any other studio.

During his tenure, Cook has overseen such box-office successes as the “Pirates of the Caribbean” movies, “Up,” “Enchanted,” “The Lion King,” “Ratatouille,” “The Incredibles,” “Finding Nemo,” “Remember the Titans,” “Beauty and the Beast,” “The Sixth Sense,” and “Princess Diaries” among many others.

Other BMC speakers scheduled to appear include:

  • MARK ZORADI – Former President of Disney Motion Pictures Group, and this year’s Briner Impact Award recipient at the BMC.
  • MICHEAL FLAHERTY – President of Walden Media.
  • STAN WILLIAMS – Script consultant on six of Will Smith’s latest films.
  • RALPH WINTER – Producer, X-Men Trilogy, Tim Burton’s Planet of the Apes, Fantastic Four movies, and Wolverine.
  • TERRY BOTWICK – Executive Producer, former SVP of programming for CBS and Pres. and COO of Big Idea Productions, and former VP of Family Channel.
  • PERRY LANARO – VP of Finance for Paramount Pictures.
  • JUSTIN CHANG – Film critic and Editor for Variety Magazine.
  • JIM KRUEGER – Comic book writer, Earth X trilogy for Marvel, Avengers, X-Men, Star Wars, Matrix, Batman, Foot Soldiers, and The Clock Maker.
  • BRIAN GODAWA – Screenwriter, To End All Wars, Cruel Logic, author of Hollywood Worldviews: Watching Films with Wisdom and Discernment
  • JAMES COVELL –Music composer, The Elevator, Santa With Muscles, The Ride
  • DAN RUPPLE – Comedy producer, writer and former Supervising Producer for CBS Television for The Price Is Right, Late Show with David Letterman.
  • BRIAN BOYD – Media Strategist with TrakVu, BoydGroup Solutions.
  • PAUL SKIDMORE – Producer, Shotgun Stories
  • JACK HAFER – Producer, Chairman, Biola Cinema and Media Arts Department
  • PHIL COOKE – BMC Host, Director/Ph D., Cooke Pictures, TWC films.

The Biola Media conference, sponsored by Biola University, is known for its intimate and practical conversations with leading Hollywood professionals, training and instruction from some of the most influential individuals in Film, TV, PR, Media Marketing, Management, and Digital Media. Held on the CBS Studios lot in Hollywood, it creates the perfect environment to learn and interact with today’s leaders in the field of entertainment.

Registration is currently open for the Biola Media Conference: $150 General Admission through April 27; and $180 at the door.  Lunch and coffee bar included.  For more information or to register online, visit  Limited press passes are available upon request, so media may call 562-777-4061.

Sponsorship opportunities are available through FrontGate Media at Biola Media Conference is proud to be a part of The FrontGate Media group.

About Biola Media Conference
In its 15th year, the Biola Media Conference exists to educate, inspire, and network media professionals while providing creative inspiration into the spiritual nature of any career in the media industry. BMC attracts participants who will benefit from direct interaction with acclaimed industry pros who are at the top of their craft. From CEOs to students, attendees secure valuable information, insight, and contacts that strengthen their character and careers. Follow the conference on twitter at


Biola University is a private Christian university located in Southern California on the border of Los Angeles and Orange counties in the city of La Mirada. For over 100 years, Biola has remained committed to its biblical foundation, integrating biblical principles with every academic program. U.S. News & World Report recognizes Biola as a “National University,” which is considered the “major leagues” of higher education. In addition to its focus on intentional spiritual development and career preparation, Biola offers a unique academic environment where all faculty, staff and students are professing Christians. With over 145 academic programs in seven schools, Biola offers degrees ranging from B.A. to Ph.D. For more information, visit or call (562) 777 – 4061.

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Biola University
(562) 777-4061


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