The Hot List 2008
Dynamic Industry Leaders 35 and Younger
TelevisionWeek is proud to present its Hot List for 2008—10 people who have been making things happen in the industry and who, at age 35 or younger, can be expected to continue making their presence felt in the years to come. This year we also announce our inaugural "On the Horizon" list—five additional players who came close to making the Hot List and who might be in the running again next year. All in all, it's another diverse bunch, as chosen by TelevisionWeek's editors and reporters. These rising stars represent the burgeoning digital side of the business as well as the traditional broadcast, cable and syndication outlets, with job descriptions ranging from agent to showrunner to development exec to on-air talent. In this special report, we spotlight the achievements of these key industry figures and take a look at what they might have in mind for the future. We also revisit with members of the 2007 Hot List and learn what they have been up to since.
Bright, ambitious people who want to find success might do well to follow Erin Burnett’s lead to the letter. As a kid in Maryland, it never occurred to her not to fire off a letter to someone whose work she admired, whether it was children’s book author Susan Cooper, heavy-duty journalist Hedrick Smith or Willow Bay, the supermodel-turned-journalist and wife of media mogul Bob Iger... More »
When Web host Lindsay Campbell was arrested in April following an organized protest over the Sean Bell verdict in New York, her actions raised the question of whether she is a citizen, a journalist or a citizen journalist... More »
As a young guy who’s been running a studio for eight months, Cameron Death hasn’t gone Hollywood yet. So says his boss, Vivi Zigler, president of NBC Digital Entertainment. The digital studio is gearing up to produce Web-based branded entertainment. Coming soon is a 50-episode series called “Gemini Division” starring Rosario Dawson, sponsored by Intel, Cisco, Acura, UPS and Microsoft... More »
Marissa Devins remembers clearly the day a writer named Caroline Williams first walked into the offices of United Talent Agency. “I asked her what her dream job would be,” Ms. Devins said. “She said, ‘I’d like to be a writer on ‘The Office’ and then get my script made.’” ... More »
With 20 pickups in his company’s two-year history, RDF USA Executive VP of Development and Current Greg Goldman has overseen his firm’s transformation from a fledgling company with only one show to a full operation that produces, develops and manages product from around the world... More »
After a number of best-selling books and network series, Jay McGraw has turned his attention to the syndication realm. The executive producer of upcoming daytime strip “The Doctors” scored a deal with CBS Television Distribution last year to bring the medically driven series to stations for a fall launch... More »
You wouldn’t know it from the fancy suits and clean-cut look he now sports, but it wasn’t too long ago that Mike Jelline spent his days banging the skins for a high school garage band called Django Vargo, playing covers of songs by Pink Floyd and Led Zeppelin. Fifteen years later, Mr. Jelline has traded “Stairway to Heaven” for the corporate ladder, rising rapidly through the TV talent department at ICM... More »
ESPN’s decision last summer to relaunch broadband site ESPN360 as part of a company effort to create a true online sports channel is already returning dividends. Since the announcement, the channel has increased distribution; it now reaches 24 million homes, up from 17 million a year ago and twice the coverage in 2006. The outlet now delivers more than 2,500 live global sports events annually via high-speed Internet connections from an affiliated service provider... More »
Tal Rabinowitz: VP of comedy development and head of digital programming and development, Sony Pictures Television
Developing half-hour comedies for network television is a pretty thankless task these days. Not many make it past the pilot process, and if they do, the odds of success seem longer every year. Thankfully, Tal Rabinowitz has a job that lets her multitask. She’s vice president of comedy development at Sony Pictures Television, a studio that not only pitches to all the broadcast networks but also has carved out a solid business model for producing half-hours on cable channels... More »
Carter Bays and Craig Thomas are saving the sitcom, one joke at a time. They carved out their place among the comedy elite with their first at-bat, CBS’ charming, quirky yet mainstream hit “How I Met Your Mother”... More »
On the Horizon
Veronica Belmont is the darling of the Internet. That’s because not only is she smart and personable, she can sweep your registry clean and school you at World of Warcraft, too.
David Chalian's infectious and abundant energy are as essential to his job as ABC News political director as his knowledge of the political scene.
Ten years after a stint as an intern in ESPN’s affiliate sales and marketing division, Rosalyn Durant sits atop the heap as VP and general manager of ESPNU.
Lola Ogunnaike journalism professors told her to “follow the writing.” She did. Now she’s the in-demand pop culture correspondent for “American Morning” on CNN and appears on NBC’s “Today” as well.
As the freshest face on Fox Sports’ “Best Damn Sports Show Period,” Charissa Thompson is one of the studio’s fast-rising stars. She has become a vital and versatile part of Fox’s coverage.