Esquire Network announced two new original programs at today’s TCA Summer TV Press Tour for premiere this fall. Weekend Fix is a six-part travel series that features actor Omar Miller (CSI Miami) and his friend, fashion designer Andres Izquieta (Five Four Clothing). In each episode they travel to a different city completely on the fly and use social media to seek out recommendations from friends, local and strangers to find go-to hotels, off-the-radar restaurants and can’t-miss local experiences the guidebooks just can’t tell you about. It’s produced by Coolfire Originals and will premiere Wednesday, October 29 at 10 PM.
The company has stayed in-house for the new top money man at two of its cable nets. Donald Storm III has been named CFO of E! and Esquire Network, overseeing all financial operations for both and pursuing growth opportunities. He had been VP Financial Planning and Analysis at NBCUniversal Corporate. Based in LA, Storm will report to E! President Suzanne Kolb and Esquire chief Adam Stotsky, working with Catherine Dunleavy, EVP and CFO of NBCU Cable Entertainment. Earlier in his career, Storm was an Audit Manager for GE corporate.
Call it Esquire Network‘s Hemingwayesque answer to Shark Week. The NBCUni cable outlet said today that its first live original broadcast event will be eight consecutive nights of the Running of the Bulls from Pamplona, Spain. The network will go live from 2-2:30 AM ET nightly from July 7-14, with the West Coast getting the potentially gore-y tape-delayed feed three hours later. Wilshire Studios is producing, and Telemundo’s Guad Venegas will host the nightly doings, for which 25 cameras will be set up along the route from the Santo Domingo corral to the Plaza de Toros. It will be the final TV appearance for said bulls — all of which end up getting toreador-ed in the ring.
Comedian and writer Spike Feresten will host Car Matchmaker, a 13-episode series from Relativity TV division Ellen Rakieten Entertainment. Esquire Network has ordered 13 episodes for a fall premiere. The half-hour show centers on Feresten finding a guy in need of a car, getting to know him, then drawing upon his two decades of expertise and instinct to find three different cars perfectly suited to the buyer. At the end of each episode, a car is chosen. “Spike has been his friends’ go-to car buying guy for years, and his passion for and knowledge about cars is truly remarkable,” said Matt Hanna, Head of Original Programming at Esquire. The former Seinfeld writer also hosted, exec produced and co-wrote his Fox late-night show Talkshow With Spike Feresten. Ellen Rakieten is exec producer of Car Matchmaker.
Esquire Network has ordered a second season of its controversial Friday Night Tykes. The announcement coincides with tonight’s special 90-minute 9 PM ET/PT episode of the docu-series, Tackling Tykes, featuring first-season coaches and parents, former NFL coaches and players, youth football leaders, psychologists, trainers and neurologists who discuss safety, coaching and the role of youth football, hosted by The Insider’s Kevin Frazier. The show was criticized by some, and and two coaches featured in the show were suspended over scenes in the first season — one for telling his players to hit an opponent in the head, and another for leading his 8- and 9-year-old players in a profane cheer.
Esquire network has started production on a new series with Joel Silver, “My Friends Call Me Johnny” — an interview show hosted by Jean Pigozzi, Esquire Network president, Adam Stotsky announced this afternoon at Winter TV Press Tour 2014. It’ll be different from all the other interview shows because Pigozzi will travel the globe to ask the most personal questions of his celebrity friends, including Michael Douglas, Brett Ratner, Calvin Klein, and Martha Stewart, among others.
Stotsky also wanted TV critics to know that in its first 16 weeks on the air, Esquire network has transitioned from a 20% male audience for Style, to 60% male for Esquire, exceeding the network’s audience composition goals. This proves, Stotsky said, the network is moving in the right direction and, to that end, they’ve ordered second seasons on the following:
· KNIFE FIGHT: Executive produced by Flower Films and Authentic Entertainment, and hosted by chef Ilan Hall, KNIFE FIGHT is an underground cooking competition featuring mystery ingredients, a one-hour time limit and a crowd of die-hard foodies. Twenty-four half-hour episodes are expected to premiere in 2nd Quarter 2014.
· BREW DOGS: Scottish rebels James Watt and Martin Dickie are returning to America to spread their love of craft beer. They’re touring the country, celebrating our finest craft breweries and creating some truly unique brews of their own. Ten one-hour episodes have been ordered from Custom Productions and Redtail Media for 2nd Quarter 2014.
· BOUNDLESS: To conquer the world’s most intense endurance competitions, athleticism and willpower
Dave Serwatka has been named VP Current Programming, Jamie French has joined as VP Communications and Marta Harmon will serve as VP Marketing, Esquire Network said today. Serwatka will oversee and guide the network’s current programming division, reporting to Matt Hanna, Head of Original Programming. Serwatka joins Esquire Network following a nine-year tenure at Bravo Media, where he most recently served as Vice President of Current & Cross Platform Productions. French will manage Esquire Network program publicity and talent relations for its slate of new original programming, reporting to Head of Communications Katherine Nelson. Most recently, French served as Vice President, Communications for Style Network And Harmon will oversee consumer, trade and event marketing in her role as Vice President of Marketing, reporting to Deena Stern, SVP, Marketing and Digital. Harmon previously served as Vice President of Consumer Marketing for Style Network.
Bet you can guess which two Esquire magazine franchises have been ordered as specials by NBCU’s Esquire Network. If you guessed the franchises are: women, and bars — you’re right! Women We Love is an hour-long “celebration of some of the most captivating, impressive and alluring women from entertainment, sports, pop culture and more.” And we’re guessing you’ve already figured out it’s going to coincide with the mag’s annual “Sexiest Woman Alive” issue in November in which Scarlett Johansson is, for a second time, named SWA — because Esquire is apparently running out of them. In the magazine, Johansson says, sexily, “You know, I gotta hustle…I’m a 28-year-old woman in the movie business, right? Pretty soon the roles you’re offered all become mothers. Then they just sort of stop.” In the cable TV special, “fascinating women who inspire us with their beauty, intelligence, style and passions” will “share their thoughts on everything that inspires and interests them, from their work to travel, fashion, humor and relationships.” Women We Love will premiere Tuesday, November 19 at 8 PM ET, produced by Wilshire Studios with Jennifer Lane serving as executive producer.
Adam Stotsky‘s rise continues. The former NBC marketing chief, who joined Bonnie Hammer’s cable ranks last year as General Manager of G4, earlier this year was tasked with launching NBCU’s new cable brand Esquire Network, originally slated to replace G4, which was recently changed to Style. As Esquire debuts today, Hammer announced in a memo that Stotsky is being promoted from GM to president. Here is her note:
Today is an exciting day for NBCU Cable Entertainment. With the debut of Esquire Network, we’re offering something truly unique…an aspirational lifestyle network aimed at the underserved, upscale male audience. It’s a “white space” we’ve identified on the media landscape…and we’ve staked a claim with a broad range of programming that celebrates the interests and passions of men today. It’s got everything from fashion and style, to food and drink, to travel and entertainment …all at one smart, sophisticated stop.
As the top brass of NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment kept its plan for switching the Esquire rebrand from G4 to Style very close to the vest, Monday’s announcement of the switcheroo caught most of the employees of the the fashion/pop culture cable network by surprise with no contingency plans. I hear about 100 people are impacted. All have been given two-week notices and offered severance packages after their employment ends on Friday, Sept. 20, just before Style’s relaunch as Esquire on Sept. 23. A good portion have been offered opportunities at other NBCU Cable Entertainment networks (the group’s portfolio includes 12 of them.) As of now it is unclear how many Style staffers will stay on in different capacity and how many will leave at the end of next week. (Style president Salaam Coleman-Smith will stay behind to help Esquire topper Adam Stotsky with the transition.)
There has been a change of plans for NBCUniversal‘s partnership with Hearst to launch an Esquire-branded cable network. Instead of NBCU’s male-centric G4 it will be the female-oriented Style that will morph into Esquire Network, which would target upscale male viewers. The decision was announced by NBCU chairman Bonnie Hammer. Launch date remains September 23. “Esquire Network offers an opportunity to introduce a lifestyle network that speaks to an upscale male audience underserved in the current marketplace,” she said. “So, in an effort to establish the most productively diversified portfolio, the decision has been made to rebrand Style as the Esquire Network, which will debut on September 23rd, led by Adam Stotsky and his team.” Style topper Salaam Coleman-Smith will stay on for the transition. “Under the effective leadership of Salaam Coleman-Smith, the Style team has demonstrated enormous passion and dedication to their brand,” Hammer said. “We are committed to making the pending changes as smooth as possible for everyone at Style. Salaam will play an integral role in the transition and at NBCUniversal in the future.” The Esquire rebrand deal was made by Hammer as G4 was part of her previous cable portfolio. She added Style to her domain around the same time the pact with Hearst was completed last February. Since then, upon further examination of NBCU’s entire portfolio, Hammer said the …
Esquire Network was originally set to launch April 22 but was pushed back last month to have more original programming ready to go, according to GM Adam Stotsky. The NBCUniversal channel has been in the process of transforming since NBCU and Hearst announced the new network in February. Now it will kick off primetime on Monday, September 23 with a two-hour special that commemorates Esquire magazine’s landmark 80th anniversary. Here’s the release that announces the original programming that will join off-net acquisitions Late Night With Jimmy Fallon, Parks And Recreation, Party Down, Burn Notice and Psych.
Los Angeles, CA (May 29, 2013) – Esquire Network will debut on Monday, September 23, 2013, it was announced today. The network will kick off primetime with a two-hour special that commemorates Esquire magazine’s landmark 80th anniversary, timed to coincide with the October debut of the magazine’s anniversary issue. The original ESQUIRE 80TH ANNIVERSARY SPECIAL (WT) will look back at the social, political and cultural forces that shaped our lives over the last eight decades – told through the lens of the magazine, its stories, images and covers.
NEW YORK – May 6, 2013 – NBCUniversal today announced that longtime NBCUniversal executive Maureen Murphy has been promoted to Senior Vice President, E! and Esquire Network Advertising Sales. She will report to Laura Molen, Executive Vice President, Cable Advertising Sales, NBCUniversal. In her new role, Murphy will oversee advertising sales strategy and 360 integration agreements for E!, the pop culture powerhouse, as well as Esquire Network, a strategic partnership between NBCUniversal and Hearst Magazines launching this summer.
G4′s transformation into Esquire Network is being postponed. Originally slated for next Monday, it will now be done in the third quarter. “We have an opportunity to launch with more original programming than we had envisioned,” Adam Stotsky, General Manager, said in a statement. “In order to give our viewers a more substantial program offering that showcases the breadth of the Esquire Network, we are pushing our rebrand to the summer.” The rebranding of G4 to Esquire Network, a television network for upscale males, in a partnership between NBCUniversal and Hearst Magazines was officially announced in February. Since then, the network has ordered several new unscripted series and acquired off-network rights to NBC’s Late Night With Jimmy Fallon but its brass felt they were not ready to flip the switch yet. In addition to new originals, in the summer Esquire also will have the latest installment of G4′s flagship series, American Ninja Warrior, which is being shared once again with NBC.
G4 may have transformed itself into Esquire Network, but some things are staying the same — like the cable network’s obstacle course competition series American Ninja Warrior airing in a shared window with sibling NBC. The show will air weekly on Esquire and then NBC on consecutive days, with original episodes on each network. Former NFL player and sports analyst Akbar Gbaja Biamila (NFL Network) will join the show as host alongside Matt Iseman, who is returning to the show for its fifth season on Esquire and its second full season on NBC. Jenn Brown (ESPN) will serve as a co-host, providing commentary and competitor interviews. Following a 2011 experiment, when NBC aired ANW‘s two-hour third-season finale to decent ratings, the two networks began sharing the series last summer. American Ninja Warrior began production on its new season on Friday in Los Angeles, features a four-stage course modeled after the Mt. Midoriyama from the original Tokyo Broadcast System series Sasuke and a few format tweaks. Arthur Smith executive produces.
The newly revamped Esquire Network (formerly G4), which targets upscale males, continues to aggressively build up content, ordering two new six-episode reality primetime series to a premiere this summer.
The half-hour How I Rock It (working title), from Ryan Seacrest Prods. and Citizen Jones, host and NBA superstar Baron Davis profiles athletes, musicians, celebrities, designers, influencers and street-style icons whose careers, lives and lifestyles are setting a stylish new standard for today’s modern man.
The hourlong docuseries Risky Listing (working title), from Zodiak New York, profiles the high-end listings agents who wheel and deal in the exclusive, intensely competitive world of New York nightlife real estate. The series will follow along with the agents as they cut deals for the hottest bar, restaurant and nightclub spaces.
The newly revamped Esquire Network (formerly G4) has reached within NBCUniversal for its next acquired property, picking up exclusive cable television rights to NBC’s late-night talk show Late Night With Jimmy Fallon. Starting Wednesday, April 24, episodes will air on Esquire Network Monday through Friday at 7 PM, one week after they first premiere on NBC. Late Night marks the first talk show addition to Esquire’s programming slate, joining recent off-network acquisitions Parks And Recreation and Party Down, which launch April 22. The cable network, targeting upscale male viewers, also has originals Knife Fight and The Getaway on tap. “Jimmy’s sharp wit, relaxed style and natural charm make him exactly the kind of guy Esquire Network viewers want to spend time with, and his show the perfect choice to lead in to our primetime,” said Adam Stotsky, general manager, Esquire Network.
This is the first time Late Night With Jimmy Fallon will air on cable. The show’s previous incarnation, Late Night With Conan O’Brien, was once a staple on Comedy Central, also airing at 7 PM.
Esquire Network is beginning to staff up for its April 22 launch as a rebranded channel formerly known as G4. PR veteran Katherine Nelson has joined as Head of Communications and will craft all communications strategy and oversee corporate communications and program publicity for the network. Also, former Comedy Central marketing exec Deena Stern has come aboard as Head of Marketing, overseeing marketing and strategic planning for on-air, off-air, digital and ad sales. Both will report to Esquire Network GM Adam Stotsky.
Beginning April 22, the G4 network will be rebranded the Esquire Network in a partnership between NBCUniversal and Hearst Magazines to create a television network for upscale males. Owned and operated by NBCU, Esquire Network will be helmed by G4 General Manager Adam Stotsky, who will work closely with David Granger, Editor in Chief of Esquire magazine, to develop the brand. G4′s flagship competition series American Ninja Warrior will return for its fifth season, to air this summer on Esquire Network and NBC. Additionally, Esquire Network will air an array of off-network scripted series, including NBC’s Parks And Recreation and Starz’s Party Down, both starring Adam Scott.
Esquire Network plans to expand on G4’s foundation of games, gear and gadgets. Program categories and genres will feature not only gaming and technology but also entertainment, food, fashion, women, humor, travel, competition, danger and more. Esquire’s unscripted projects in development include Knife Fight, executive produced by Drew Barrymore, Flower Films and Authentic Entertainment. Hosted by Top Chef winner Ilan Hall, Knife Fight is an underground, after-hours cooking competition where talented chefs go head to head in front of a rowdy crowd of celebrities, critics and die-hard foodies. Another original series, The Getaway (working title), is executive produced by Anthony Bourdain and Zero Point Zero and features travel-loving, well-known personalities — people deservedly famous for excellence in their fields — who take viewers to their favorite city on the planet, giving the insiders’ track on their top spots to eat, drink, shop and hang out. “There is a vastly under-served audience in cable TV — today’s modern man — and by joining forces with Esquire, we will deliver a multi-platform experience to this upscale, engaged, passionate audience, one that widens the aperture beyond G4’s technology and gaming base,” Stotsky said. “Esquire magazine brings 80 years of unparalleled insight into what makes men tick, and we will incorporate the best of this iconic brand to produce original shows that build the network for growth and success.”