Former U.S. Sen. Chris Dodd—co-author of the Dodd-Frank financial reform bill who retired from the Senate in January—has taken up a new position as head of the Motion Picture Association of America.

The MPAA announced Tuesday that it had named Dodd as its new chairman and chief executive officer. Dodd, who completed five terms as a Democrat from Connecticut in the U.S. Senate, will assume his new role on March 17, St. Patrick’s Day.

In his farewell speech when leaving the Senate, Dodd (left) warned that “our electoral system is a mess,” and pointed to the dangers of the 24-7 media cycle.

“Newly-elected Senators will learn that their every legislative maneuver, their every public utterance, and even some of their private deliberations, will be fodder for a 24-7 political media industry that seems to favor speculation over analysis and conflict over consensus,” Dodd said.

“This explosion of new media brings with it, its own benefits and drawbacks—and it is occurring at the same time the presence of traditional media outlets are declining. So while the corridors of Congress are crowded with handheld video and cell phone cameras, there is a declining role for newspaper, radio and network journalists reporting the routine deliberations taking place inside subcommittee hearings.”

In accepting his new post, Dodd noted that he had worked with MPAA officials Jack Valenti and Dan Glickman “on many occasions over the years” and said he looks forward to working with the movie studios on major issues such as technological challenges and global growth.

“The major motion picture studios consistently produce and distribute the most sought after and enjoyable entertainment on earth. Protecting this great American export will be my highest priority,” Dodd said in a statement. “Taking this step represents a continuation of my work in the Senate, from advancing the interests of children and families and creating and safeguarding American jobs to the protection of intellectual property and the expansion of international trade.”

In an MPAA news release, Warner Bros. Chairman and CEO Barry Meyer said Dodd is uniquely qualified to represent and protect the film industry.

“Chris Dodd not only has the political instincts and experience, but he’s the right person to lead the film industry through its toughest challenges regarding content protection and piracy on a domestic and global scale,” Meyer said.

Read about Dodd’s political fight over the fiduciary standard at AdvisorOne.com.