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Jim Whitaker is the Chairman of Whitaker Entertainment based at Walt Disney Studios. He is currently producing a Tom McCarthy-directed film Timmy Failure. Last year he produced A Wrinkle in Time, and before that Pete’s Dragon, The Finest Hours, and The Odd Life of Timothy Green.
Jim started in the film industry in 1987 assisting craft services on John Waters’ “Hairspray.” His Hollywood career began as an intern at Imagine Entertainment, where he eventually rose to President of Motion Picture Production during a 16-year period with the company. In that time, he Executive Produced films such as 8 Mile, Friday Night Lights, American Gangster, The Changeling, Cinderella Man and Curious George. Prior to joining Disney in 2011, Jim directed Rebirth, a Peabody-Award Winning documentary. The feature-length film combines time-lapse photography of the rebuilding of the World Trade Center site with intimate stories of five people coping with grief post 9/11. The film premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in 2011, and was released theatrically by Oscilloscope. It aired on Showtime on the tenth anniversary of September 11th. A ten-minute installation, “Rebirth at Ground Zero,” currently resides at the 9/11 Memorial and Museum at Ground Zero in New York City.
Jim is a graduate of Georgetown University and holds an MFA from the Peter Stark Program at USC as well an honorary doctorate from Pace University in New York. Jim currently resides in Los Angeles, California, with his wife, Chris, and two children, Rebecca and Emmett. He is a 2004 Henry Crown Fellow of the Aspen Institute and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.