CEO/Co-Founder, Baobab Studios
Baobab CEO and Co-Founder Maureen Fan is CEO & Co-Founder of the 2 time Emmy-award winning and leading immersive animation studio Baobab Studios, whose mission is to inspire you to dream by bringing out your sense of wonder. Baobab was started by industry leaders Maureen Fan (Zynga VP of Games, Farmville Franchise), Eric Darnell (Director of all 4 Madagascar films), and Larry Cutler (Dreamworks' Head of Character Tech, Pixar TD Toy Story 2, Monsters Inc, Oscar tech judge). Baobab was named Most Innovative Company for 2018 by Fast Company. Baobab has raised $31M to date making them one of the largest independent VR studios today.
Their latest animation (both VR + 2D) Crow: The Legend, starring and executive produced by John Legend, with a star studded cast including Oprah Winfrey, Diego Luna (Y tu mamá también, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story), Constance Wu (Crazy Rich Asians, Fresh Off the Boat), and Liza Koshy (YouTube star with 16 million subscribers, > 2 billion views), launched this winter to critical acclaim. The piece won an Annie Award for the Best VR Production and was an official selection at Annecy Cannes Venice, where it premiered. The 2D version of Crow: The Legend went viral with over 3 million views online in less than 2 weeks.
The company's Emmy-award winning VR animation, INVASION!, starring Ethan Hawke, launched to substantial critical acclaim and has become the #1 top viewed VR. In a first, Hollywood is taking IP from VR to become a feature film: Roth Kirschenbaum Films (Maleficent, Alice in Wonderland, Snow White and the Huntsman) has signed on to adapt INVASION! into a big screen feature film "flattie". Baobab just won a 2nd Emmy for their 2nd immersive animation, ASTEROIDS! starring Elizabeth Banks, an official 2017 Sundance Film Festival and Cannes Film Festival selection. They also premiered Jack at Tribeca, a location based immersive theater experience, starring Lupita Nyong'o.
Maureen has held leadership roles in film, gaming and the consumer web. She was most recently vice president of games at Zynga, where she oversaw three game studios including the Farmville's, which contributed 40 percent of the company’s revenues. Previously, she worked on Pixar's Toy Story 3 film and at eBay in product management and UI design. Her collaboration, The Dam Keeper, directed by Dice Tsutsumi and Robert Kondo, was nominated for the 2015 Oscar Best Animated Short. Maureen was also named one of ‘The Most Creative People of the Year’ by Ad Age for 2016 and more recently Variety crowned her as one the execs to watch in 2018. She received her undergraduate degree in an interdisciplinary program in computer science, art and psychology from Stanford University, graduating Phi Beta Kappa, and earned her master’s degree in business from Harvard University.