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Gail Berman To Produce TV, Theater, Movies, With Fox At The Jackal Group

By | Monday June 30, 2014 @ 11:53am PDT

Gail Berman To Produce TV, Theater, Movies, With Fox At The Jackal GroupFox Networks Group is back in business with Gail Berman — they’re partnering to launch a new production company called The Jackal Group.  Berman, a former Fox Broadcasting president, will develop and produce scripted, unscripted and factual entertainment programming for FNG’s channels, including Fox Broadcasting Company, FX/FXX, the National Geographic Channels, and Fox International Channels.

FOX NETWORKS: LogoThe partnership also will look for digital and feature film opportunities for non-21st Century Fox distribution entities. Additionally, Jackal Group will draw on Berman’s background in theater in creating and developing concepts for live, theatrical entertainment.  Berman will have an equity stake in the independent venture, and will serve as Chairman and CEO; she will report to the new entity’s board, on which she will serve as a director, alongside FNG chairman and CEO Peter Rice, who made today’s announcement, and FNG president and COO Randy Freer. Read More »

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Fox Networks Group Names Clara Kim EVP Business & Legal Affairs

By | Monday April 28, 2014 @ 8:01am PDT

In a move that Fox Networks Groupclarakim1 says complements its previously announced restructuring of its business and legal affairs team, it has named Clara Kim EVP Business and Legal Affairs for National Geographic Channels and National Geographic Channels International. She will be based FOX NETWORKS: Logoin Nat Geo’s Washington DC offices and will report to FNG EVP and General Counsel Rita Tuzon. In the newly created position, Kim will work with Courteney Monroe, newly-upped CEO of National Geographic Channels U.S., and Ward Platt, CEO of National Geographic Channels International and COO of Fox International Channels and will be responsible for business and legal affairs pertaining to National Geographic Channels’ domestic and international businesses. Kim will oversee a business and legal affairs group charged with negotiating programming, development, acquisition and production agreements for both the U.S. and international channels and also will be responsible for the business and legal aspects of U.S. channel operations and ancillary businesses.

Kim’s appointment comes on the heels of the news last week that Howard Owens would be stepping down as President of National Geographic Channels U.S. in June, the exit of David Lyle as CEO of Nat Geo Channels, and the upping of Monroe to CEO. Read More »

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Andrew Macdonald’s DNA Films Teams With Fox Networks Group For TV Venture

By | Wednesday February 5, 2014 @ 8:00am PST
Nellie Andreeva

andrewmacdonaldpeterriceUK-based DNA Films is entering television with the launch of DNA TV Limited, a new venture set up in partnership with the Fox Networks Group. The new UK-based independently owned and operated company will work with British writing, producing and directing talent to create dramas, comedy and limited-run event series for UK and international broadcasters. FNG will have a first-look to co-finance and distribute the DNA TV Limited’s projects on Fox, FX Networks and The National Geographic Channels in the U.S. as well as the 300+ Fox International Channels.

This marks FNG’s first ever first-look pact. It stems from the long-standing relationship between DNA Films CEO Andrew Macdonald and FNG chairman and CEO Peter Rice who previously worked together on the film side. DNA Films’s 28 Days Later became one of the first big hits for For Searchlight after Rice took over the specialty film division. Read More »

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Randy Freer Named President/COO Of Fox Networks Group

By | Monday October 28, 2013 @ 11:13am PDT

A big step up for Randy Freer, who’s considered one of the most influential execs in TV sports. He’ll continue to oversee sports at Fox but with “a broad strategic and operational role across FNG” including Fox Broadcasting, reporting to FNG CEO Peter Rice, the company says. Freer seems to have a halo from the launch of Fox Sports 1 in August. Rice praised Freer’s “impressive skills as both an operator and builder of businesses” and said he’ll be “a key partner for me in overseeing and driving continued growth of our global channels business which spans nearly 400 channels in 200 countries.” Execs who’ll now report to Freer include Michael Biard, President of Distribution at Fox Networks; Toby Byrne, President of National Ad Sales at Fox Broadcasting Company, Fox Sports Media Group; Lou LaTorre, President of Advertising Sales at Fox Cable Entertainment Networks, Fox Hispanic Media Group; and Kyle Sherman, EVP Home Team Sports. FNG finance & business development, corporate communications, legal and human resources functions will report jointly to Rice and Freer.

Here’s the company’s release: Read More »

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Fox Networks Promotes Michael Biard To President Of Distribution

By | Monday October 21, 2013 @ 2:05pm PDT

Fox Networks Group CEO Peter Rice made the announcement, which puts Michael Biard in charge of distribution strategy, sales and marketing — replacing Mike Hopkins, who last week became CEO of Hulu. His turf includes Fox Broadcasting and Fox’s 45 national and regional domestic television networks as well as their non-linear extensions including VOD, online, mobile and other emerging platforms. Rice calls Biard “a gifted negotiator who is also able to analyze and solve complex issues in order to create significant value for Fox and our MVPD and broadcast affiliate partners.” Biard has been with the company for 13 years, and helped with the launch and acquisition of networks including Fox Sports 1, FXX, National Geographic Channel, Nat Geo Wild, Nat Geo Mundo, and BTN (formerly Big Ten Network). He also oversaw digital distribution efforts including TV Everywhere initiatives and VOD.

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David Haslingden To Step Down As President, COO Fox Networks Group

By | Wednesday August 15, 2012 @ 10:37am PDT

NEW YORK – August 15, 2012 – News Corporation (NASDAQ: NWS, NWSA; ASX: NWS, NWSLV) today announced that David Haslingden, who has served as President and COO of Fox Networks Group since January 2011, has decided to step down at the end of the calendar year in order to return to his native Australia and spend more time with his family.

Mr. Haslingden was instrumental in the creation and growth of Fox International Channels (FIC), a business unit that now encompasses more than 350 channels in over 55 countries. Prior to his current role, he was CEO of both FIC and National Geographic Channels Worldwide for more than 10 years, and has served News Corporation in a variety of executive roles in the U.S., Asia, Australia and Europe over the past two decades.

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News Corp Fast-Tracks Peter Rice To Fox Networks Group As Chairman & CEO

By | Monday July 23, 2012 @ 12:01pm PDT

David Hill will transition to a News Corp-wide role. This Peter Rice promotion ends Peter Rice Fox Networks Groupmonths of recent speculation that the Chairman of Entertainment for Fox Networks Group, who’s been on a very fast track inside Fox and News Corp, would move immediately into Peter Chernin‘s old role heading both film and television. Don’t forget that Rice began working at Fox as a summer intern in 1989. And that he and Rupert Murdoch have a very special relationship. I’ve been told that Rice’s father helped Rupert conquer the newspaper unions once upon a time, and, as a result, Murdoch looks upon Peter like a son. So the conventional wisdom is that Peter Rice is being groomed to be the next Peter Chernin or Chase Carey. And to do that No. 2 News Corp job, he’s got to know TV inside and out. It wasn’t that long ago that Rice was upped from Fox Searchlight to Fox Broadcasting’s Entertainment Chairman and then his duties expanded to oversee programming for the broadcast network as well as FX. Rice has earned the reputation within News Corp as a key creative type. As Murdoch once said about Rice, “Peter has the vision, creativity and determination.” Spoken like a proud surrogate father. Here’s the announcement: Read More »

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Fox Networks Group Continues Business And Legal Affairs Restructuring

By | Wednesday June 6, 2012 @ 5:06am PDT

The company has some promotions this morning that it says complement its previously announced restructuring plans. Kelly Cline was promoted from SVP to EVP of entertainment business and legal affairs for the Fox Cable Networks, reporting to FNG’s General Counsel Rita Tuzon. Cline, who joined the company in 1989 as counsel for 20th Century Fox Television, will handle FX, Fox Movie Channel, National Geographic and NG Wild. In addition, Matthew Bensen was promoted to SVP of business and legal affairs overseeing distribution for Fox Cable Networks. He’ll report to FCN Deputy General Counsel Claudia Teran and will continue to be involved in cutting deals with pay TV providers for Fox’s broadcast and cable services.  Also, Phillip Gharabegian was promoted to SVP of business and legal affairs for sports at FNC. He’ll handle rights and sponsorship agreements as well as day-to-day business and legal affairs for Fox Sports’ ad sales unit, Home Team Sports. He’ll report to Karen Brodkin, EVP Business and Legal Affairs for FOX Sports Media Group.

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Fox Network Group Ups Karen Brodkin To Sports Unit’s EVP Biz & Legal Affairs

By | Friday February 24, 2012 @ 12:53pm PST

Fox Network Group has promoted longtime business and legal affairs executive Karen Brodkin to EVP Business and Legal Affairs at the Fox Sports Media Group. The move continues a restructuring that began in June to bring most of the company’s business and legal affairs group under one umbrella. Brodkin will be responsible for business and legal affairs at Fox Sports Media Group, which includes Fox Sports, 19 regional sports networks, their affiliated regional websites and FSN national programming, as well as Fox Sports Interactive Media. Her duties include negotiating professional and collegiate media rights acquisitions as well as production, programming and talent agreements, and oversight of local media rights agreements between FSN and its Major League Baseball, NBA and NHL team partners.

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Fox Networks Distribution Unveils Reorg

By | Monday September 26, 2011 @ 6:11am PDT

In a move designed to better align the division’s leadership, Fox Networks (FN) Distribution President Mike Hopkins today announced a restructuring of the group’s operations. Executive Vice President Michael Biard will be assuming additional responsibilities, with Senior Vice President of Advanced Services Julie Simon now reporting to him. Additionally, cable industry distribution veteran Steve Carcano is joining FN as Senior Vice President, National Accounts reporting to Mr. Biard, and Kris Nielsen-Refs will become FN’s new Vice President, Digital Distribution, reporting to Ms. Simon.

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David Lyle Named CEO For National Geographic Channels

By | Thursday August 4, 2011 @ 12:55pm PDT
Nellie Andreeva

Veteran Fox executive David Lyle, former president of the now defunct Fox Reality cable channel and international reality format licensing division Fox LOOK, has been named CEO for National Geographic Channels. The  co-venture of Fox Networks Group and the National Geographic Society includes National Geographic Channel, Nat Geo Wild, which replaced Fox Reality, and Nat Geo Mundo. Lyle, who had shepherded development for National Geographic’s West Coast office for the past 6 months, will take oversight of the company from Fox Sports chairman David Hill. National Geographic Channels president Steve Schiffman will report to Lyle, who will be based in Washington, D.C. Lyle’s resume also includes stints at FreemantleMedia and Pearson Television.

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Fox Restricts Online Access To New Shows; For 8 Days Only Customers Of An Authorized Service Can See Them

LOS ANGELES – Fox Networks and Fox Broadcasting Company (FOX) today announced that beginning August 15, video distributors that participate in the company’s online authentication service will have an exclusive 8-day window for new episodes of FOX programs. To watch new episodes of FOX shows the next day, viewers can visit,, or the online TV portals of any future participating distributors and log in with their subscriber usernames and passwords. Viewers who do not subscribe to a participating distributor will be able to watch new episodes online eight days following their initial air dates.

DISH Network will be the first to offer this service, allowing their verified subscribers to take advantage of the exclusive window and view new episodes of FOX shows the day after they air on broadcast television.

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Fox Network Restructures Biz & Legal Team

By | Monday June 27, 2011 @ 12:52pm PDT

Fox Networks Group EVP and General Counsel Rita Tuzon today announced a restructuring designed to bring most of the company’s business and legal affairs group under one umbrella. Claudia Teran, who previously served as SVP Business and Legal Affairs and Associate General Counsel of Fox Cable Networks (FCN), has been named EVP Business and Legal Affairs and Deputy General Counsel for Fox Networks Group. Adam Reiss, who had served as VP Business and Legal Affairs, will now serve as SVP in Corporate Transactions and Distribution for Fox Networks Group. Additionally, Anna Tran Reyna, who previously was also VP Business and Legal Affairs for Fox Cable Networks, will now serve as FCN’s SVP Business and Legal Affairs, Digital Media. In the sports area, Leanna Einbinder, who previously served as VP Business and Legal Affairs, has been promoted to SVP Business and Legal Affairs for FCN. Earlier this year, Tuzon began the restructure when she reorganized the cable and broadcast network Standards & Practices Groups, combining them under the leadership of now-EVP Elizabeth Casey.

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Tony Vinciquerra To Leave Fox, David Haslingden To Head Fox Networks Group

By | Thursday January 6, 2011 @ 10:44am PST
Nellie Andreeva

Big change on the TV side of News Corp. – Tony Vinciquerra, chairman and CEO of Fox Networks Group, is leaving the company after 10 years, he just announced to the staff (his email is below). In a separate memo, also posted below, News Corp. president and COO Chase Carey lays out Fox’s new hierarchy, with David Haslingden, CEO of Fox International Channels, now being named president and COO of the Fox Networks Group. But in the new reporting structure, the layer that Vinciquerra held is being eliminated, with his current reports Haslingden; David Hill, Chairman and CEO of Fox Sports Media Group; Peter Rice, Chairman Entertainment, FNG; and Mike Hopkins, President of Affiliate Sales and Marketing for Fox Cable, now all reporting to Carey.

In the past couple of years, Vinciquerra emerged as Fox’s top TV deal-maker, spearheading tough carriage negotiations with Time Warner Cable, Cablevision and DISH that netted the company millions in retransmission consent fees and created a template for other broadcast networks. As chairman and CEO of Fox Networks Group, Vinciquerra oversaw Fox Broadcasting Co., Fox Cable Networks – FX, National Geographic Channel and NatGeo WILD, Fox Movie Channel, FUEL TV, 19 O&O regional sports networks, SPEED, Fox Soccer Channel and Fox Soccer Plus, Fox College Sports, FOX Deportes, and the Big Ten Network – as well as Fox International Channels, which reach 350 million subscribers worldwide. Under him, Fox’s cable networks became a key contributor to News Corp.’s bottom line and last quarter were responsible for 50% of the company’s profits.

Vinciquerra’s rise within Fox peaked in the spring of 2009 when, as part of the company-wide reorganization following the exit of Peter Chernin as News Corp. president and COO (Chernin was the person who had brought him to Fox), Vinciquerra was given oversight of the entire portfolio of Fox networks – broadcast and cable, domestic and international, reporting to Rupert Murdoch. Then in July of that year, Chase Carey was named president and COO of News Corp., and Vinciquerra began reporting to him. Several months later, Fox Entertainment chairman’s Peter Rice’s duties were expanded to oversee programming for the broadcast network as well as FX, something Vinicquerra had been doing. The move raised speculation about a possible exit by Vinciquerra. Last year, he was approached by Comcast’s Steve Burke about possibly joining the merged Comcast-NBCU TV operations.

Vinciquerra said he first considered leaving in July but decided to put off the move with two big retrans negotiations looming – one with Cablevision and one with DISH. With those resolved, he said he approached Carey with a request to be released early from his contract around Thanksgiving, and the two spent the past couple month ironing out the company’s succession plan. Vinciquerra will stay on until Feb. 11 to help with the transition. One of his last duties will be attending the Feb. 6 Super Bowl, which is carried by Fox this year, where he will introduce the new Fox Networks Group executive team to buyers and other key attendees.  As for the future, Vinciquerra said he had already been approached by several private equity firms and other companies. As for NBCU, that door closed long time ago as it involved a move to New York, said Vinciquerra, who plans to stay in Los Angeles with his family. He also intends to pursue his passion for broadband. (Vinciquerra is a member of the Board of Motorola). “I’ve been fascinated to watch what’s been going on in the communication business,” he said, adding that he has been studying how electricity changed the world. “I see a lot of parallels to broadband, and I feel it’s time to step back and study that on the public or private side. It’s going to have a revolutionary effect.”

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Int’l Reality Unit Fox LOOK Adds 2 Execs

By | Wednesday August 4, 2010 @ 3:00am PDT
Nellie Andreeva

Fox LOOK, Fox Networks Group’s recently launched division dedicated to the international licensing and production of unscripted programming, has named Stephen Wong SVP business development and operations, and Glen Hansen VP sales. Wong comes from Sony Pictures TV, international productions; Hansen from Target Entertainment Group (UK). Both will report to Fox LOOK president David Lyle.

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