Since joining Lionsgate's Board of Directors in 1999 and becoming Vice Chairman of Lionsgate in March 2000, Mr. Burns has joined with CEO Jon Feltheimer in building Lionsgate into the leading next generation filmed entertainment studio. Reflecting Mr. Burns' conversance with the digital marketplace, Lionsgate has also been a leader in leveraging its content into fresh digital media initiatives including the Company’s significant equity investment in leading viral content marketer Break media, as well as launching the FEARnet VOD and Internet horror channel with partners Sony and Comcast. Mr. Burns has also been involved in the 2009 launch of EPIX, the Company's new premium entertainment channel with partners Viacom and MGM. In addition to his leadership of Lionsgate's corporate management team, Mr. Burns has played a key role in the acquisition, production and distribution of some of Lionsgate's most successful films, including the Best Picture Academy Award® -winning CRASH (2006), the Oscar® - winning MONSTER’S BALL, this year’s Oscar nominated PRECIOUS, and the award winning documentary, The Cove.
Under the stewardship of Messrs. Burns and Feltheimer, Lionsgate has grown its annual revenue to a projected $1.6 billion this year. Lionsgate has acquired and integrated such companies as Trimark Holdings (2000), Artisan Entertainment (2003), UK-based Redbus Film Distribution (2005), the Debmar-Mercury television syndication company (2006), independent film production and distribution studio Mandate Pictures (2007), and most recently acquired TV Guide Network and TV Guide.com. The company is also owner of a prestigious and prolific 12,000-title library. Mr. Burns is currently a director of TV Guide Network and Break Media.
Lionsgate’s diversified portfolio also features a vibrant television business including the Emmy Award-winning “Mad Men” and critical sensations, “Nurse Jackie” and “Weeds,” as well as a $600-million-a-year home entertainment business with 7% industry market share.
Mr. Burns has been profiled or featured in such varied major media outlets as AMC’s Sunday Morning Shootout, Barron's, BloombergTV, Business Week, CBS MarketWatch, CNBC "Power Lunch" and “Fast Money”, Dow Jones, the Financial Times of London, Fortune, The New York Times, Reuters and The Wall Street Journal, and has been a featured speaker on a wide range of media, trade and other issues as well as a contributing writer for the Huffington Post.
Mr. Burns’ business career began at IBM where he was awarded his classes Performance Leader Award in 1980. During his Wall Street career Mr. Burns formerly passed the Series 3 (commodity futures), 5 (interest rate options), 7 (general securities), 8 (sales supervision), 24 (general securities principal) and 63 (uniform state law) exams and was registered with various state and federal agencies such as the NASD (now FINRA). He served for nine years as managing director and head of Prudential Securities’ Los Angeles investment banking office and specialized in raising equity within the media and entertainment industry. Prior to joining Prudential, he spent nine years at Shearson/American Express in New York and Los Angeles. On the entrepreneurial front, Mr. Burns has served as chairman of Ignite Entertainment, a Los Angeles-based entertainment production company, was cofounder of the Hollywood Stock Exchange (www.hsx.com
) and serves as chairman of Novica.com (www.novica.com
) one of the largest handmade gift and home décor websites in the world. Novica works directly with artists and artisans around the world with offices in Asia, Africa, and Latin America. Novica is headquartered in Los Angeles and partnered with National Geographic, Scripps Ventures and the World Bank.
Mr. Burns graduated with a B.S. from Arizona State University and received his M.B.A. from the John E. Anderson Graduate School of Management at the University of California at Los Angeles where he has recently joined its distinguished Board of Visitors.