A high-ranking executive at Mark Cuban’s AXS TV died Sunday. The network announced the death of Darrell Ewalt, Vice President and Executive Producer of Event Programming and Production. He was 58.
“The 15-year-veteran of the company was responsible for overseeing all of AXS TV’s sports and live event programming production, and served as executive producer of ‘AXS TV Fights,’ ‘New Japan Pro Wrestling’ and the former weekly live mixed marital arts program ‘Inside MMA,’ which aired for 10 seasons,” the network said in its announcement.
Cuban, who is CEO of AXS TV, said: “AXS TV is forever indebted to Darrell’s tireless service. He left his imprint on every aspect of this company, both as a producer, engineer and as a person. We send his family our sincerest condolences during this difficult time.”
The release adds: “Armed with a vast knowledge of production and engineering/technology, the award-winning Ewalt was a true standout in the industry. His ability to blend the experiences he acquired in both realms not only made him a superb creative producer with a rolodex full of contacts, but also gave him state-of-the-art skills in engineering and broadcasting technology. His most recent project was spearheading the design and engineering for the network’s new live broadcast production truck. It was, however, his easy smile and penchant for having a story for every situation that endeared him to all who met and worked with him.”
Ewalt was one of the network’s original hires when AXS TV — then known as HDNet — launched 15 years ago.
“With HD technology still in its rudimentary stages in 2001, collaboration and compromise between engineers and producers was key to creating quality productions,” the announcement notes. “Ewalt thrived on this challenge, producing the first HD broadcasts of countless sports ranging from MLB and NHL, to MLS, MMA, and the Olympics — crafting programs that were not just historic firsts, but truly compelling television experiences.”
The release adds: “Ewalt played an integral role in HDNet’s success as the first HD network in the world to cover television broadcasts in HD. As a result of his great efforts, in 2002, during his tenure with HDNet, Ewalt won an Emmy Award for the production of the first-ever high-definition Olympics broadcast at the Salt Lake Winter Games.”