MTV has formed a telefilm division and tapped former Pacific Western production VP Maggie Malina to run it.
Malina will be based in Los Angeles and report to Brian Graden, exec VP of programming at the musicvid channel. Her mandate will be to find and develop made-for-TV movies for the musicvid channel, according to sources.
The move signals a significant departure for MTV, which has rarely, if ever, aired feature-length programming.
MTV’s sister channel VH1, which occasionally runs music-themed movies, has acquired rights to such theatrical features as “Blues Brothers 2000” and “That Thing You Do!” VH1 has also announced plans to commission biopics of musical artists.
MTV execs declined comment.
Malina recently co-produced the MTV/Pacific Western college comedy “Dead Man on Campus,” which Paramount released in August.
During her tenure at Gale Anne Hurd’s Pacific Western, Malina oversaw the development of such films as “The Ghost and the Darkness,” “The Relic” and “Sugartime.”
Malina began her career while at Brown U., where she created and produced a nationally syndicated student soap opera.
She later worked for Walter Parkes and Laurie MacDonald at Columbia Pictures before segueing to Pacific Western as a story editor. She was later promoted to director of development, and eventually vice president of production.
(John Dempsey in New York contributed to this report.)