Gary Kleinman is President & CEO of StoryArc Originals Media & Entertainment.
Gary Kleinman is a 23-year veteran executive of The Walt Disney Studios in Burbank, where he served as a Vice President. Joining Disney in 1987, Gary pioneered many initiatives aimed at blending creativity with new technologies. In addition to the studio's motion picture group, he led many other Disney divisions in the migration to digital production and distribution, CGI visual effects, marketing, and web-based content including television, theme parks, home entertainment, music, consumer products, and corporate – all of which adopted innovations Gary introduced. Within Disney, Gary founded Touchstone Digital, an in-house incubator group that advanced emerging technologies in the production of visual effects for Disney's weekly flagship movie-of- the-week, ABC's "The Wonderful World Of Disney", hosted by Disney CEO, Michael Eisner.
In 2011, Gary left Disney to launch StoryArc Originals and FirstRun TV Network as an early adopter of web-based streaming television. A key objective of the effort was to help empower independent writers, directors, and filmmakers to use new, affordable technology to produce their own shows. He launched FirstRun TV as a free platform for online distribution of programming to computers, mobile devices, smartphones, smart TVs, and Roku devices. Gary worked with dozens of TV producers and filmmakers, and helped launch hundreds of productions and episodes of original content.
Prior to joining Disney, Gary was partner in an independent television production company, Kleinman/Pollard/Hull Productions. KPH developed the late-night TV dating game show, "Matchmaker", in association with Procter and Gamble, NBC O&O stations, Four Star International, and Orbis Communications. The nationally syndicated show was a humorous take on dating shows, and based on a long-running Los Angeles radio show, Dial-A-Date (aka, Loveline), hosted by legendary Los Angeles radio personality, Dave Hull. Despite its late-night timeslot (after Late Night with David Letterman), MatchMaker became an underground hit and was featured in Rolling Stone Magazine’s annual Hot 100 List. The company also produced "Rise & Shine America" with Pat McCormick, the iconic comedian and Johnny Carson's head writer for The Tonight Show.
Gary’s move to television was preceded by many years in the radio industry. He was President of Fourcast Radio, Inc. which, in association with Filmways, produced and distributed the syndicated entertainment news series, "Record Report with Robert W. Morgan". Another radio icon, Robert W. Morgan was a pioneer of Top 40 radio and top morning personality at "Boss Radio" KHJ in Los Angeles and Billboard Magazine Radio Personality of The Year. Robert W. can be heard as the radio backdrop throughout Quentin Tarantino's Once Upon A Time In Hollywood. "Record Report" ran for five years and featured news and interviews with current top recording stars and was a popular alternative newscast on more than 500 radio stations across the United States. "Record Report" was sponsored by Toyota, Dentyne and Bubblicious Gum, Certs, Clearasil, and other national advertisers. Fourcast Radio also developed a unique weekly radio format called "America’s Weekend Wake-up with Robert W. Morgan", featuring the top current local hit songs in cities throughout the country.
Gary was involved with the first-ever national radio simulcast of The Grammy Awards, and Producer of three-hour radio specials, "The Grammy Awards Preview".
As a multi-instrument musician, composer, and humorist, Gary wrote and produced numerous hit song parodies heard regularly on the Westwood One syndicated "Dr. Demento Show", the ABC Radio satellite music network, and the Olympia Radio Networks. On a more serious music note, Gary wrote and produced many radio commercials, jingles, and broadcast music – including the broadcast themes for the Los Angeles Lakers basketball and Los Angeles Kings hockey teams.
Gary’s interest in radio actually began when he was a page at KTTV, Channel 11 in Los Angeles (owned then by Fox’s predecessor, MetroMedia) and worked on such shows as "Truth or Consequences" with Bob Barker, "Don Kirshner’s Rock Concert", and the popular game show, "Concentration". Inspired by "Concentration", Gary developed an idea for a radio game show called "The Pop Quiz", and took it to Casey Kasem, of "American Top 40 fame". While the game show wasn’t ready for prime time, Casey asked Gary to write for "American Top 40" and he discovered the new frontier of radio syndication.
Concurrent with his early radio efforts, Gary became Associate Editor of "Recording Engineer/Producer Magazine" – the bible of the recording studio industry. As Co-Publisher/Editor, he also launched sister publication, "Broadcast Programming & Production Magazine" which covered the radio industry and the growing syndication market.
Gary got his very first job in the entertainment industry while in high school. As a musician and electronics enthusiast, he landed a position at the world famous Sound City Recording Studios in Los Angeles where he learned how to record and mix music under legendary record producers/engineers, Keith Olsen (Fleetwood Mac, Pat Benatar, Foreigner, Grateful Dead, Santana), Bill Drescher (Rick Springfield, INXS, Rod Stewart, Ringo Starr), and Jim Hilton (Iron Butterfly, Buffalo Springfield, Air Supply). Sound City was to become the premiere recording studio of the 1970s and 1980s. In 2013, the movie, "Sound City", was released. Produced and directed by Nirvana drummer and Foo Fighteres front man, Dave Grohl, "Sound City", chronicles the history of the legendary studio, bringing together many of the artists whose gold and platinum albums were recorded there.
And like many musicians, Gary's interest in guitar started when he saw The Beatles on "The Ed Sullivan Show". Throughout middle and high school, Gary was in the group that always won the Battle of The Band contests, and while in high school, his band was signed to Warner Brothers Records.
Gary lives with his wife in Ventura, California. He has two daughters – one an entertainment industry attorney, and the other a choreographer.
Gary is now focusing on screenwriting and developing original projects for TV and film.