Every year, Variety of Southern California honors an individual for his or her commitment to the causes and mission of Variety the Children’s Charity and the children we serve, as well as his/her position in the entertainment community.
In 2018 we honored Mitch Neuhauser, Managing Director of CinemaCon. In accepting the honor, Mitch said, “Who would have thought a partial semester of organic chemistry at the University of Wisconsin – Madison would have such a dramatic impact on my life. The day I dropped that class it was goodbye to my dream of becoming a veterinarian (although I am the proud owner of a magnificent three-legged Golden Retriever – Laila) and hello to a degree in communications, the world of entertainment, and well, the rest is history.
On June 1, 1981 my tenure and now 37-year career in the motion picture theatre industry took flight when Bob Sunshine took this greenhorn under his wing and taught me the ropes when it came to industry charities, conventions and associations. Two of Bob’s clients were Variety – The Children’s Charity of New York and The Foundation of the Motion Picture Pioneers. Getting involved from a philanthropic standpoint and witnessing first hand all the great things this industry accomplishes was instilled in me from the outset. Producing a Variety Telethon with the great Monty Hall is a career highlight. The company grew exponentially as did my role within the industry. At one point we were running ShowEast, Cinema Expo (now CineEurope), CineAsia, ShoWest, NATO of New York State and one of the leading trade publications, Film Journal International. My lifelong passion for the movies, the industry and the theatrical experience was fully realized.
Then in September, 2009, NATO made a decision to regain ownership and operation of the industry’s largest and most important convention, giving birth to CinemaCon and they named me Managing Director. To continue serving the industry, acting as a conduit between NATO, exhibition, and distribution to help promote, grow and celebrate the moviegoing experience has been the most rewarding experience of my professional career. And whenever the chance arises to help support our industry charities, I like to think I’m always there to answer the call.”