|Born||Andrew A. Heyward
February 19, 1949
New York City, New York
|Occupation||Producer, writer, CEO|
Evelyn Heyward (1st Wife)Amy Moynihan (2nd Wife)
Heyward was born in New York City, New York, the son of Sylvia (née Block) and Louis M. "Deke" Heyward, who was vice president in charge of development at Barry & Enright Productions. In 1986, Heyward took the lead of DIC Entertainment after performing a buyout of majority shares owned by Radio-Television Luxembourg. He subsequently bought the remaining shares owned by Jean Chalopin, founder of the French company DIC Audiovisuel .
Heyward is a multi-Emmy Award-winning producer of children’s entertainment who has made more episodes of kid’s television than any other producer. As former Chairman and CEO of DIC Entertainment (DIC), and Co-President and CEO of A Squared Entertainment, he has produced over 5,000 episodes of award-winning children’s programs, most of which are household names, including The Real Ghostbusters, Inspector Gadget, Alvin and the Chipmunks, G.I. Joe, Hello Kitty’s Furry Tale Theatre, The Super Mario Bros Super Show, Sabrina the Animated Series, Strawberry Shortcake, Care Bears, Captain Planet, Teddy Ruxpin, The New Archies, and dozens more. He has also been the largest producer of FCC mandated educational informational programming for children, and has produced hundreds of PSAs promoting child safety, health, exercise, and nutrition.
Heyward ran DIC as its CEO and founder for 25 years, selling it to Capital Cities/ABC in 1993, which eventually became a subsidiary of The Walt Disney Company in 1995. In 2000, Andy re-purchased DIC and took the company public the following year.
On June 20, 2008, it was announced that DIC would be acquired by Cookie Jar Group. On July 23, 2008, Cookie Jar completed the acquisition of DIC Entertainment, and DIC was then completely folded into Cookie Jar Entertainment.
In 2009 Heyward co-founded A Squared Entertainment with his wife, Amy Moynihan Heyward, former Director of Global Marketing for McDonalds Corporation. Having spent the last quarter of a century in the kids industry, the two created A Squared Entertainment with a mission to develop meaningful entertainment in various formats, and recreate the way brands are managed and brought to market in a multi-media, multi-tasking world.
On November 13, 2013 Genius Brands International, Inc. (GNUS: OTCBB) and A Squared Entertainment LLC merged to form an intellectual property (IP) and multimedia content creation and distribution company focused on branded “content with a purpose” for kids.
Combining the assets and experience of both companies, the two companies were consolidated under the Genius Brands International banner. Andy Heyward assumed the role of Chairman and CEO of Genius Brands International.
Heyward has had numerous industry recognitions, including two Emmys, nine Emmy nominations, two Humanitas Awards, two Cable Ace Awards, five Golden Reel Awards, three Environmental Media Awards, a New York Television Festival Award and a National Education Association Award, among others. He was inducted into the KidScreen Hall of Fame in 2006, with Roy Disney, and he co-won the Studio of the Year at Italy’s Cartoons on the Bay International Festival of Television Animation in 2006. Heyward received the UCLA Alumni Association’s 2002 Professional Achievement Award. He is the recipient of the Zimmer Children’s Museum Lifetime Achievement Award. With his wife Amy, they produce the short film which opens the annual Berkshire Hathaway shareholders meeting, and they co-authored a book with Warren Buffett this year promoting financial literacy for kids.
Heyward is a member of the Producers Guild of America, the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, the International Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, and the British Academy of Film and Television Arts. He was the 2010 UCLA College of Humanities Commencement speaker and is active in many community activities, including serving on the Board of Directors of the Paley Center for Media (formerly known as the Museum of Television and Radio), and Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, and is a Mentor in the UCLA mentoring program.
Heyward earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in philosophy from UCLA.