Charlie Fink (producer)

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Charlie Fink
Charlie Fink AR.jpg
Charlie Fink
Alma materThe Art Institute of Chicago
OccupationAuthor, Executive

Charlie Fink is a former Disney executive. He was vice president for creative affairs at Disney for 6 years.[1] He is credited for pitching the story "Bambi in Africa" which later became The Lion King (1994).[2][3] In 1992, Fink was chief operating officer of the digital media company Virtual World Entertainment in Walnut Creek.[4] He is also the author of two AR-enabled books.[5]


Fink earned his BA Degree from Sarah Lawrence College and a Master of Fine Arts Degree from the Art Institute of Chicago.[6][7]

In 1987, Fink started his career in the Animation Division of Walt Disney Pictures, where he rose to the position of vice-president. In his years with Disney, Fink developed The Lion King (1994), which was based on his idea, "Bambi in Africa".[2][3]

In 1992, Fink left Disney to join the digital media company Virtual World Entertainment, a software developer and location-based Entertainment Company owned by Tim Disney.[4][1]

In early 1996, Fink joined AOL as senior vice-president and chief creative officer of Greenhouse Networks,[8] where he created and launched the service Santa's Home Page where kids could e-mail a letter to Santa Claus.[6][8][9][10]

After leaving AOL in 1999, Fink founded, a daily email service, which was sold to American Greetings Interactive (AGI) in 2000.[11] Fink served as President of American Greetings until 2003, and chairman until 2005. During his tenure, American Greetings acquired its two largest competitors, and, and transitioned from a free site to a fee based subscription service with over five million paying subscribers.[12]

Fink is the author of the AR-enabled books Charlie Fink's Metaverse, Convergence, How The World Will Be Painted With Data,[5] and Remote Collaboration & Virtual Conferencing: The Future of Work. He is an adjunct faculty member teaching extended reality at Chapman University in Orange, California.[13]

Theatrical career[edit]

Charlie Fink is the founder and artistic director of the New Musical Foundation, which produces readings, workshops, and festival productions of new musicals.[14] He was chairman of the board[15] of New York Musical Theatre Festival (NYMF),[15] from 2007 to 2017.[15] He was honored at the 2017 NYMF gala[15] alongside playwright Marsha Norman for his ten years of leadership.

Fink was previously honored in 2014 by No Rules Theater Company.[16][14] Fink produced Who's Your Baghdaddy? at the Actor's Temple in New York City in 2015. The show nominated Best Musical by the Off-Broadway Alliance.[17] The New York Times called the production "a cunning, rock-solid musical comedy with a terrible title".[18] The show, its title shortened to Baghdaddy, was revived for a subsequent, limited run at St. Luke's Theater in New York City in March 2017.[citation needed] It played 46 performances and closed on July 2, 2017.[19]


  1. ^ a b SEIDMAN, DAVID (January 19, 1995). "A 'Toon Man for the Ages : Animation: Joe Grant was on Disney's original talent team". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved November 1, 2020.
  2. ^ a b Tim Grieving (September 17, 2014). "The Music of The Lion King: A 20th Anniversary Conversation with Rob Minkoff and Mark Mancina". Projector and Orchestra. Retrieved March 6, 2015.
  3. ^ a b "Roundtable Interview:The Lion King". Blu-Ray. September 28, 2011. Retrieved March 6, 2015.
  4. ^ a b Patrice APODACA (December 14, 1993). "It's High-Tech Playtime". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved March 6, 2015.
  5. ^ a b Charlie Fink's Metaverse – An AR Enabled Guide to AR & VR. Cool Blue Media. January 8, 2018. ISBN 978-1640079793.
  6. ^ a b "The Next Big Thing". Sarah Lawrence College. Retrieved November 1, 2020.
  7. ^ "The Big Fish of the Fun Business". Information Technology Leaders. Archived from the original on October 18, 2014. Retrieved March 6, 2015.
  8. ^ a b Sharon McDonnell (October 22, 1997). "Behind the Screens at AOL's Entertainment Network". Retrieved March 6, 2015.
  9. ^ Bruce Haring. "Launching Entertainment Vehicles in Cyberspace". USA Today. Retrieved March 6, 2015.
  10. ^ John Geirland (November 2, 1997). "Making AOL a Media Company". Archive Wired. Retrieved March 6, 2015.
  11. ^ John Backus (December 31, 2000). "AG Interactive". New Atlantic Ventures. Retrieved March 6, 2015.
  12. ^ "E-Commerce Report:The possible sale of Blue Mountain Arts could lead to the end of the free online greeting card". The New York Times. South Africa. September 10, 2001. Retrieved March 6, 2015.
  13. ^ Arp, Dennis (March 30, 2020). "Dodge College VR Class Reinvents Itself to Research Book on Virtual Collaboration". Chapman Newsroom. Retrieved April 24, 2020.
  14. ^ a b Lorraine Treanor (November 3, 2014). "Heís mad for musicals". Washington DC Theater Scene. Retrieved March 6, 2015.
  15. ^ a b c d Ryan MCPhee (October 4, 2017). "Marsha Norman and Charlie Fink Will Be Honored at New York Musical Festivalís 2017 Gala". Playbill. Retrieved January 26, 2018.
  16. ^ Joel Markowitz (October 26, 2014). "No Rules Theater Company proudly honors Charlie Fink with the 2014 RuleBreaker Award". Washington DC Metro Theater Arts. Retrieved March 6, 2015.
  17. ^ "The Official 2016 Off Broadway Alliance Award Nominations". The Producer's Perspective. April 26, 2017.
  18. ^ Anita Gates (October 13, 2015). "Whoís Your Baghdaddy?,í on the Difference Between Credible and Reliable Intelligence". The New York Times. Retrieved September 10, 2016.
  19. ^ "Baghdaddy". Show Score. Retrieved January 26, 2018.

External links[edit]