Amy Pascal, the woman who worked her way up from production executive to chairman of one of the world's biggest movie studios, has stepped down from her role at Sony following the company's recent cyber-attack and email hack. Ms Pascal, who has overseen over 300 Oscar nominations, will start her own production company that will launch in May.

Amy PascalAmy Pascal is starting her new venture in 2015

Sony was temporarily debilitated by the cyber-attack which led to the leaking of numerous pre-release movies and which led the studio to suspend its North Korea comedy The Interview. 

"I have spent almost my entire professional life at Sony Pictures and I am energized to be starting this new chapter based at the company I call home," said Ms Pascal in a statement.

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As part of the agreement, Sony will fund Ms Pascal's production company for at least the next four years and will retain distribution rights to the movies it produces. Sony is yet to announced Pascal's successor, leaving Michael Lynton in temporary charge.

Pascal was one of the most high profile names involved in the e-mail hack, which leaked correspondence between herself and producer Scott Rudin. During one exchange, the pair commented on President Barack Obama's viewing habits in a controversial and borderline racist manner - inferring that he would mostly be interested in African American movies.

At the time, Pascal said in a statement, "The content of my emails to Scott were insensitive and inappropriate but are not an accurate reflection of who I am.

"Although this was a private communication that was stolen, I accept full responsibility for what I wrote and apologize to everyone who was offended."

The pair also discussed Angelina Jolie's apparent attempts to poach director David Fincher from the Steve Jobs movie.

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