Women in Television: Sue Naegle

Nov 16, 2008  •  Post A Comment

Who: Sue Naegle, president, HBO Entertainment

Women in TV

Why: After running the TV department at United Talent Agency for nearly a decade—packaging shows including “Six Feet Under” and “True Blood”—Ms. Naegle made the leap from seller to buyer in April. She’s wasted no time putting a slew of projects into development as HBO attempts to launch a new generation of must-watch programs. Among the big-name writers and directors working on projects for Ms. Naegle: David Milch, Martin Scorsese, Alan Ball, Noah Baumbach, Jim Carrey and Tom Wolfe. While HBO has always had a reputation for being exceedingly talent-friendly, Ms. Naegle has brought a deep knowledge of writers to the network. And because she’s put together several of HBO’s shows, she already knew most of the major players inside the company. “From the outside, it might look like a big leap,” Ms. Naegle said. “But I knew everyone at HBO really well. It didn’t feel like I was going to work with a company of strangers.”

Ms. Naegle said her guiding strategy at the network is to have faith in her own take on material. “I know it sounds a little trite to say, ‘Trust your gut,’ but we’re all paid for our point of view and our opinion,” she said. “To be too suggestible is a mistake.”

What: Ms. Naegle is married to comic and former “The Simpsons” writer Dana Gould.


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