Michael Polis is a senior level strategist and producer specializing in brands and intellectual property. With his proven expertise in marketing, licensing and product development and an ability to work in all media, he has successfully developed, managed and produced content for some of the world’s most celebrated brands. In addition, he has developed and produced award-winning content for film, television and digital media. He has experience overseeing companies, large project teams (150+) and managing multi-million dollar budgets.
Polis is the creator and former Executive Producer of UMIGO – a cutting edge transmedia property designed to teach today’s generation of digital savvy children age 5-8 years old math and literacy skills. Under Polis’ direction, the project was awarded a multi-year grant with the U.S. Department of Education for thirty-two million dollars.
Prior to 2013, Polis was President, W!LDBRAIN Entertainment and EVP, Branded Entertainment & Consumer Products, DHX Media. In addition to overseeing global development, production, distribution & digital operations for W!LDBRAIN Entertainment, he led DHX Media’s international licensing activities. He also served as executive producer on key productions including Yo Gabba Gabba! for Nickelodeon in addition to projects for HBO, Disney and Mattel.
Polis joined W!LDBRAIN as the studio’s Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) in June, 2007. As CMO, Polis led and supervised unprecedented global marketing and licensing efforts on behalf of W!LDBRAIN’s entertainment assets, including the groundbreaking series Yo Gabba Gabba! W!LDBRAIN Entertainment develops television, feature film, short-form programming and product and brand licensing initiatives on behalf of the studio’s intellectual property.
Prior to joining W!LDBRAIN in 2007, Polis served as Senior Vice President of Marketing Worldwide at The Jim Henson Company, overseeing global strategic marketing initiatives for the entire Henson library, including The Muppets, Fraggle Rock and Labryrinth. Polis received an Emmy nomination as an executive producer on Kermit's Swamp Years and numerous awards and nominations as executive producer for the theatrically distributed film Mirrormask. Before Henson, Polis was Executive Director of Marketing at Universal Home Entertainment, managing marketing and promotions of home entertainment titles such as Babe, E.T., The Lost World: Jurassic Park and The Land Before Time.
Polis serves as a member of the executive committee for the Children’s Programming Peer Group and was a two term Governor of the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. He is also a member of the Producer’s Guild of America’s new media group and a member of the Las Virgenes Chapter of YPO (Young President’s Organization).
He holds an M.B.A. from Northeastern University and resides in Los Angeles with his family.
Featured in: Mentor Meeting: Licensing