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Viacom Merges Paramount Network Television and CBS Productions

Sep 7, 2004  •  Post A Comment

Viacom Co-President and Co-Chief Operating Officer and CBS Chairman Leslie Moonves announced Tuesday the company is merging its two major production entities and promoting CBS Entertainment President Nancy Tellem to the newly created post of president, CBS Paramount Network Television Entertainment Group.

The merger does not affect Spelling Television, which will remain an independent production entity, or the syndication operations of King World and Paramount Domestic Television, which will continue to be run by Roger King and Joel Berman, respectively. Spelling and the syndication operations will report directly to Mr. Moonves.

As a result of the merger, Garry Hart, who joined Viacom in 1993 as president of Paramount Network Television and has been president of Paramount Television Productions since 2002, will leave the executive ranks to become an independent producer developing programming for Paramount Network Television. David Stapf, formerly head of current programming for CBS Entertainment, has been named president of the new, combined Paramount Network Television. He will report to Ms. Tellem.

Ms. Tellem will oversee operations at CBS Entertainment and Paramount Network Television, including development, programming, production and legal and business affairs. She will continue to report to Mr. Moonves.

Nina Tassler, who currently heads CBS’s drama development department, succeeds Ms. Tellem as president of CBS Entertainment, while Maria Crenna, formerly executive VP of CBS Productions, has been promoted to the position of executive VP of Paramount Network Television, where she will report to Mr. Stapf.

In addition, Mr. Moonves announced Kelly Kahl has been named senior executive VP of programming operations, where he will oversee the coordination of all CBS programming. He will continue to have responsibility for program planning and scheduling of both the CBS and UPN Television Networks while taking on the added responsibilities of supervising coordination between CBS’s and UPN’s programming divisions and the networks’ respective operations in sales, marketing, affiliate relations and research and with the Viacom Television Station Group.