AMC Theatres has promoted Ellen Copaken to lead its marketing department. As senior VP of marketing, effective immediately, she will report to AMC’s chairman and CEO Adam Aron and will join the company’s executive committee.
She’s taking over for Eliot Hamlisch, who recently departed the company. He had been commuting across the country to AMC’s Theatre Support Center in Leawood, Kansas from his residence in northern New Jersey. For personal reasons, Hamlisch was unable to relocate permanently, according to a statement from AMC.
Copaken joined AMC in February 2022 as VP of growth strategy. Her first initiative was launching a line of microwave, ready-to-eat popcorn, which is now sold in more than 2,600 Walmarts in the U.S. and online. She previously worked in senior marketing leadership roles for Frito-Lay, PepsiCo and Hostess Brands.
“In the year and a half that she has been with us, her talent, skill, and affable nature have been obvious to all who have interacted with her,” Aron said in a statement. “I could not be more excited to be working with her as she now also assumes the leadership of our marketing efforts.”
In conjunction with Copaken’s promotion, AMC has made several related corporate organizational moves. For one, AMC’s grocery popcorn initiative will move to the marketing department and continue to be overseen by Copaken and her popcorn team.
Another change is that AMC’s external communications is no longer under marketing, and Ryan Noonan, who leads the department as VP of corporate communications and public relations, now reports directly to Aron. Meanwhile, AMC’s internal communications efforts will move to Human Resources, led by Carla Chavarria, senior VP and chief human resources officer.
Elsewhere, Copaken’s prior boss Mark Pearson, senior VP and chief strategy officer, will continue to lead AMC’s strategic and innovative growth opportunities. He also reports directly to Aron.
“Our marketing group has continually blazed new trails in the movie theatre industry,” Aron said. “One of the key reasons I am so confident that Ellen will excel in her new role is that she will be directing a remarkably skilled team of officers and managers. I know that together they all will continue to keep AMC at the forefront of innovation and imagination to push our business forward.”