Newark-based Audible has brought in a Head of Audible Studios from Los Angeles, and it is Zola Mashariki. She comes from stints at Fox Searchlight Pictures, BET, and Good Films, where at each company she held executive content roles. At Audible, Mashariki will report to Rachel Ghiazza, Head of U.S. Content.
“Zola’s track record of creating award-winning, breakout hits, her exquisite taste, production expertise, and deep understanding of the intersection of audience appetite and quality content is beyond impressive, Ghiazza raved. “Her incomparable talent and industry relationships and leadership chops will be pivotal as we continue to break boundaries and accelerate the audio revolution.”
The match seems especially well made considering that many of Mashariki’s most successful projects in the past have been book adaptations including The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel starring Dame Judi Dench and Dame Maggie Smith, Gina Prince-Bythewood’s breakout hit The Secret Life of Bees starring Dakota Fanning, Queen Latifah, Jennifer Hudson and Alicia Keys, The Last King of Scotland, for which Forest Whitaker won an Academy Award for Best Actor, Never Let Me Go starring Keira Knightley, Mira Nair’s critically acclaimed The Namesake with Kal Penn, Jim Sheridan’s Academy Award nominated In America, Tamara Jenkins’ Academy Award nominated The Savages, and Denzel Washington’s directorial debut Antwone Fisher.
Mashariki is also a lawyer (Harvard Law School), which certainly facilitates the business of acquiring books for crossover production.