Sean Bailey
Sean Bailey by Gage Skidmore.jpg
Bailey at the San Diego Comic-Con in July 2010.
Years active2002–present
EmployerWalt Disney Studios
TitlePresident of Walt Disney Studios Motion Picture Production (2010–present)
SpouseCharmaine Bailey [1]

Sean Bailey is an American film and television producer. He has been the president of Walt Disney Studios Motion Picture Production since his appointment in 2010.[2][3]


Early career

As a co-founder and executive of LivePlanet,[4] Bailey served as executive producer for The Emperor's Club, the Emmy Award-nominated Project Greenlight, Push, Nevada (which he also co-wrote with Ben Affleck), producer Best Laid Plans, Matchstick Men, and Gone Baby Gone.[5]

From 2004 to 2008, Bailey continued as chairman and board member of LivePlanet while under a writing-producing deal at ABC Studios.[6] In 2008, the film wing of LivePlanet was dissolved and Bailey teamed with Disney to form the production banner Ideology Inc, which produced Tron: Legacy, the sequel to the 1982 film Tron.[7]

In November 2009, it was announced that Bailey would produce a remake of the 1979 film The Black Hole, which never materialized.[7] He co-wrote (with Ted Griffin) the original screenplay for the 2016 film Solace, starring Anthony Hopkins and Colin Farrell.[8]

Walt Disney Studios

In January 2010, Bailey was named president of production at Walt Disney Studios, overseeing live-action films produced by Walt Disney Pictures and Touchstone Pictures.[2] Under Bailey, Disney has pursued a tentpole film strategy, which included an expanded slate of large-budget films, including franchise sequels, original films, and live-action adaptations of their animated films. The studio found particular success with the latter type of films, which began with the commercial success of Alice in Wonderland (2010), and continued with Maleficent (2014), Cinderella (2015), The Jungle Book (2016), Pete's Dragon (2016), Beauty and the Beast (2017), Aladdin (2019), and The Lion King (2019). The latter three, along with Alice in Wonderland and Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, have all surpassed $1 billion in global box office, with The Lion King earning nearly $1.7 billion worldwide.[9][10] The division has also produced reimaginings of other fairy-tale properties such as Oz The Great and Powerful (2013) and Into the Woods (2014) [11][12] and more recently expanded its portfolio of these films for both theatrical and streaming platforms with films such as Cruella and Jungle Cruise.

Other tentpole films including The Lone Ranger (2013), Tomorrowland (2015) and literary adaptations of John Carter (2012), The BFG (2016), and A Wrinkle in Time (2018), became box-office disappointments. Despite the renewed focus on tentpole films, the studio continued to produce smaller, "brand-deposit" films, such as The Muppets (2011) and Saving Mr. Banks (2013), a period drama which was the first time the studio had depicted its namesake co-founder onscreen.[13]

With the launch of Disney's streaming service Disney+ in November 2019, Bailey led a significant expansion in the studio's output, spanning several genres.[14] The mix of projects includes reimaginings of classic titles such as Lady and the Tramp and Pinocchio, featuring Tom Hanks as Geppetto; character-driven films such as Togo; inspirational sports dramas such as Rise, about NBA star Giannis Antetokounmpo; and such sequels to popular originals as Hocus Pocus 2 and Enchanted follow-up Disenchanted.[15][16] The studio also produces adaptations of children's and young adult books such as Timmy Failure: Mistakes Were Made, Flora & Ulysses, Stargirl, and Better Nate Than Ever for Disney+.

In 2012, Bailey was named to the board of Sundance Institute, where he serves as Vice Chair.[17] [18] In 2015, he joined the Board of Trustees at Caltech, serving on its JPL Committee.[19] [20]

Other Ventures

Bailey is a founding investor of Teremana Tequila, the tequila founded by Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson.[21]

Personal life

Bailey was born to father Jay Bailey, a biochemical engineer and professor at California Institute of Technology before his death in 2001.[22] His former step-mother, Frances Arnold is a chemical engineer and Nobel Laureate.[12] Bailey is married to Charmaine Bailey and they have two children.


  1. ^ "Lessons in Ambition, Courtesy of the Bailey Scholarship Fund". April 26, 2017.
  2. ^ a b Graser, Marc (January 14, 2010). "Disney names Sean Bailey production chief". Variety. Retrieved July 12, 2020.((cite news)): CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  3. ^ D'Alessandro, Anthony (March 12, 2020). "Steve Asbell Takes Over 20th Century Studios Post Emma Watts; Vanessa Morrison Named Walt Disney Studios Streaming Production President". Deadline. Retrieved April 4, 2020.
  4. ^ "The Walt Disney Studios Names Sean Bailey President of Production". January 14, 2010.
  5. ^ "Sean Bailey". September 26, 2017.
  6. ^ Barnes, Brooks (January 14, 2010). "Disney Names Sean Bailey Its New Production President". New York Times. Retrieved May 10, 2016.
  7. ^ a b "The Hollywood Reporter | Heat Vision: 'Tron: Legacy' team mount a 'Black Hole' remake". Retrieved December 1, 2009.
  8. ^ Lang, Brent (January 8, 2016). "Anthony Hopkins Serial Killer Thriller 'Solace' Gets Release Date (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. Retrieved May 10, 2016.
  9. ^ "'The Lion King' Crosses $1 Billion at the Worldwide Box Office". Collider. July 30, 2019. Retrieved January 7, 2022.
  10. ^ "The Lion King (2019)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved January 7, 2022.
  11. ^ McClintock, Pamela (April 29, 2016). "Disney Rules Hollywood's Fairy-Tale War as Other Studios Bite the Poisoned Apple". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved May 10, 2016.
  12. ^ a b "Disney's Film Production Chief Talks 'Mary Poppins' and His Big Bet on 'The Lion King': "It's a New Form of Filmmaking"". The Hollywood Reporter. December 20, 2018.
  13. ^ Barnes, Brooks (October 16, 2013). "Forget the Spoonful of Sugar: It's Uncle Walt, Uncensored". New York Times.
  14. ^ "Disney Investor Day 2019". The Walt Disney Company. March 11, 2019. Retrieved January 7, 2022.
  15. ^ "'Rise,' the movie about Milwaukee Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo and his family, will premiere on Disney+ in 2022". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved January 7, 2022.
  16. ^ "First Look at Hocus Pocus 2; Disenchanted and Pinocchio Set 2022 Release; More Reveals From Disney+ Day". Playbill. Retrieved January 7, 2022.
  17. ^ "Sundance adds Disney's Sean Bailey to board". Variety. May 24, 2012. Retrieved May 10, 2016.
  18. ^ "Sundance Institute Board Of Trustees Elects Ebs Burnough As Chair; Sean Bailey & Gigi Pritzker As Vice Chairs". Deadline. July 30, 2021.
  19. ^ Stoller-Conrad, Jessica (March 19, 2015). "Sean Bailey Elected as Caltech Trustee". Retrieved May 10, 2016.
  20. ^ "Caltech Board of Trustees". Caltech. Retrieved January 7, 2022.
  21. ^ "Dwayne Johnson on Instagram: "Two of my favorite human beings to build business with 🥃 @michaelseanbailey President of Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures and founding @teremana investor 🥃 @mayalasry Chief Marketing Officer for Seven Bucks Companies and founding @teremana investor 🥃 aka #bossmama They are the definition of "hardest workers in the room" and above all else, the audience always comes first. #WaltDisneyCompany #SevenBucksCompanies #build 🫱🏾🫲🏻"".
  22. ^ Balnch, Harvey (2016). Memorial Tributes Vol 20. National Academies Press. pp. 26–29. ISBN 978-0-309-43729-5.