In a move that could lead to the end of Lionsgate’s online advertising business, the company has hired the top web developer in London, according to reports.
In an interview with The Guardian, Jason Stempel, a former chief executive at Google, said he and Lionsgate had “worked closely” for weeks on the development of a website that will house Lionsgate Studios’ new film The Lion King.
“We have been working together closely and we have been able to build the website in a way that is going to be able to compete with other websites,” Stemel told The Guardian.
Lionsgtalks development of the site began in March, with Stempell working closely with site owner, Bespoke Art, which is run by the former director of the BBC’s documentary series The Lion Kingdom.
The website was to be published on Monday, but will not be live until Sunday, the paper said.
Stempel said that Lionsgate was now aiming to get the site up and running in time for the premiere of the film on April 10, although the exact date will be announced when it is announced.
Stemspeller has also been working on a website for the film’s director, Ben Stiller, who has been nominated for an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor.
He told the newspaper that he hoped the project would give the film a boost, although he was also aware that it would be difficult to build a massive website for such a large film.
“I have a feeling that Ben is going too big,” Stemspel said.
“But we do have a team here in London and I do think it’s a good opportunity to make this project live.”
The Lion King, a film about a kingdom where lion kings are portrayed by animated characters, has been highly critical of the depiction of animals in the film, which has also faced criticism for its depiction of women and the treatment of people with disabilities.
Lion King’s development has caused controversy in the UK, with some celebrities such as Kate Hudson and Kirsten Dunst have expressed support for the project.
A spokesman for Lionsgate declined to comment.
Lloyd’s website, which includes a feature about the film itself, has also come under criticism for the lack of information it contains.
The spokesman for Lloyd’s, which also sells the music of Prince, said the company would not be commenting on the situation with the website.
The Lion Kingdom will be released in the United States and Canada on April 14.