NBC Makes Development Staff Changes

Jan 10, 2006  •  Post A Comment

After a week of speculation NBC announced Tuesday a shake-up of its network development staff, with NBC Universal Television Studio’s Katherine Pope coming back to the network to run prime-time development.

Ms. Pope has been named executive VP for the network, replacing former CBS executive Ghen Maynard, who was in the position for less than a year.

In addition, Ms. Pope’s NUTS colleague Jeff Ingold has been named the network’s senior VP of comedy development. Mr. Ingold replaces the former comedy development chief, Cheryl Dolins. NBC’s senior VP of drama development, Michael Thorn, is also leaving the network.

The moves mark a major change to NBC’s executive team at a critical time in the series development process; scripts bought last summer and fall are now being sifted through as the network decides which projects get a pilot pickup.

“The timing of these moves will allow this new team to be integrally involved in pilot decisions at this important stage in our development season,” said NBC Entertainment President Kevin Reilly in a statement.

“Ms. Pope, who will report to Mr. Reilly, will be responsible for all of NBC’s new series development. Mr. Ingold, who reports to Ms. Pope, will oversee all comedy series development. No replacement for Mr. Thorn has been named.

As part of the change NBC is also dropping its newly developed team system, where development executives were either assigned specifically to hear NBC Universal-produced series pitches or pitches coming from outside studios.

Most recently, Ms. Pope was senior VP of Drama Series, for NUTS. Before she joined the studio, she served as VP of drama development at the network. Earlier, Ms. Pope served as VP of primetime series at NBC Studios. She joined NBC Studios as an entertainment associate in prime-time series in 2000. She began her career in television as a writer and producer of documentaries.

Mr. Ingold served as senior VP of comedy at NUTS. Like Ms. Pope, he has experience at the network, where he held VP positions in the comedy development and current programming departments. He has also worked for the Greenblatt-Janollari production company. His first job with the network was in the mid-1990s as an administrator in program research department.