CEO and Chairman of Fox Studios (1996-2000). He was allegedly fired because of Fight Club (1999), which only made $37 million at the American box office, but became profitable years later.
Member of the Board of Governors of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (Executives Branch) [2002-2005].
From 1985 to 1993, Mechanic was head of Buena Vista Home Video, a Disney subsidiary. During this time, Mechanic oversaw the record-breaking video releases of Disney titles such as Pinocchio (1940), Fantasia (1940), One Hundred and One Dalmatians (1961), The Little Mermaid (1989), and Beauty and the Beast (1991). By the time Mechanic left Disney, "Beauty and the Beast" had sold 20 million copies, more than any other video at the time.
Was president of worldwide home video distribution for The Walt Disney Company (1985-1993).
President of the 'Official Competition' jury at the 51st Berlin International Film Festival in 2001.
Personal Quotes (3)
For a start, evil out of the hands of innocence is always interesting. [on the recent popularity of child-monster in horror movies (2005)]
When you had Gone With the Wind, the system was much more controlled. Movies were 90% of the leisure-time activities. Movies are now probably 10%, so you're fighting a confluence of other media. Driving through not just the clutter of other movies, but the clutter of entertainment, concerts, music, cable, satellite, you name it.
Everybody is about basically the same kind of thing, caught in a spiral of stupid budgets, with everybody relying 100% on these big movies when the name of the game is not making the same thing all the time. You can't afford to have 12 blockbusters a year. The idea has gotten empty. We went from the point where $100m should be like touching scalding coals to the point where it's something you roast chestnuts on. [August 2005]