Meet the Dueling Studio Heads at Netflix and Amazon

Courtesy of Netflix

At Sundance in January, Netflix and Amazon each bought a reported six films—more than anyone else. Leading the companies’ charge into filmmaking are their studio heads, Ted Sarandos at Netflix (NFLX) and Ted Hope at Amazon (AMZN). Their strategies differ, but their goals—disruption and domination—are as similar as their names.

Ted Sarandos, Netflix

Chief Content Officer Photograph by David Paul Morris—Getty Images

Claim to Fame
Sarandos has led Netflix’s transformation into a creator of original programming, starting with the groundbreaking House of Cards.

Master Plan
Now that Netflix is winning on the small screen, Sarandos’s next step is to turn the streaming site into a big-time movie studio. But he’ll have to find a way to make nice with theater chains first. Because Netflix wants to release films online and in cinemas at the same time, many theater companies have refused to work with it.

Big Bet
Spending a reported $60 million to buy the rights to Brad Pitt’s satirical comedy War Machine. (The movie is expected to be released this year.)

Ted Hope, Amazon Original Movies

Head of Production Photograph by Matt Winkelmeyer—Getty Images

Claim to Fame
Before Amazon, Hope produced more than 70 films, including Happiness and 21 Grams. He joined the online retailer’s new studio last year.

Master Plan
The Amazon Prime membership program has a reported 41 million subscribers. Netflix has 75 million. Hope is charged with catching up by building out Amazon’s movie studio (an Oscar would be nice) and taking a friendlier approach with theater chains—allowing a short window between cinema release and online distribution.

Big Bet
Manchester by the Sea, a Casey Affleck flick that Amazon recently bought for $10 million, making it the second-biggest deal at Sundance this year.

For more on Amazon Original Movies, watch this Fortune video:

A version of this article appears in the March 1, 2016 issue of Fortune with the headline “Clash of the Teds.”

Subscribe to Well Adjusted, our newsletter full of simple strategies to work smarter and live better, from the Fortune Well team. Sign up today.

Read More

Great ResignationDiversity and InclusionCompensationCEO DailyCFO DailyModern Board