Dave Hollis, Former Disney Executive and Podcast Host, Dies at 47
One of the executives who was instrumental in the rollout of the MCU and the acquisition of Star Wars at Disney has died.
Dave Hollis, who was the company's president of worldwide distribution from 2011 to 2018 and was also a motivational author, was just 47 years old.
Following the news of his death, many wanted to know more about how Dave, who is survived by his four kids, had died, and whether he'd been sick in the days before his death.
What was Dave Hollis's cause of death?
A representative for Hollis's family said that the former executive died peacefully in his sleep at his family home in Austin, TX. No cause of death was given with the announcement, but the family had previously announced that Dave had been hospitalized due to heart problems.
During his time at Disney, Dave oversaw unprecedented growth for the studio as a winning combination of MCU and Star Wars properties dominated the box office.
Dave oversaw theatrical distribution for Disney for seven years, a run that included four Star Wars films, Marvel hits like The Avengers, Captain America: Civil War and Black Panther, as well as animated mega-hits like Frozen.
In 2016, Dave oversaw a record-setting year for Disney as it became the first studio to earn $7 billion globally in a single year, and the first studio to cross $3 billion domestically.
His net worth was estimated at $5 million at the time of his death.
Dave Hollis was dating Heidi Powell at the time of his death.
Dave and personal trainer Heidi Powell were dating at the time of his death, and many of Dave's posts on Instagram feature her. The two first met in 2020 as they were both going through divorces.
Dave, who left Disney to take on a career as a social media influencer and self-help guru, invited Heidi onto his podcast so that they could discuss their divorces and what they had learned from them.
Although they ultimately did meet for a conversation, they never turned the mics on.
“We sat and talked for 4 hours," he said in a post on Instagram about how their relationship began. "Ran through all the similarities in divorces that chose us. We each have four kids, were transitioning away from partners we’d been working with and had to work through a relationship ending in public. It made me feel normal.”
Tributes to Dave poured in on social media.
After leaving Disney, Dave wrote several self-help books and helped run his now ex-wife Rachel Hollis' self-help company. Because of his public work in this space, Dave is quite well known on platforms like social media, and those who followed his work outside of Disney were mourning his loss on social media.
"This is a really sad, disturbing death. Dave Hollis was a rising star at Disney in movie distribution, then left to start a lifestyle guru company with wife Rachel which went wildly off the rails. It was crazy enough as it is — but now Dave has died at 47," The Wrap CEO Sharon Waxman tweeted.
"Horrible news. Met Dave Hollis when I started covering box office. He was such a wonderful, decent guy. His death at such a young age is so tragic and unfair," Variety Executive Editor Brent Lang wrote.
Dave will clearly be missed, both by those who knew him and those who only interacted with him online.