Fox fosters exec to head spun off unit

In a bid to better manage its on-air assets, 20th Century Fox TV is creating a current programming department and tapped Jeffrey Glaser to run it.

Studio had previously used its program execs both to develop new series and keep an eye on shows once they got to air. But with 20th’s roster of skeins much larger than it was five years ago, studio chiefs Dana Walden and Gary Newman decided to divide their exec staff into separate departments.

Warner Bros. TV has long had separate current and development divisions; Universal Network Television and Touchstone Television combine the two areas.

“Years ago, when the structure we have now was put in place, it was because the company was focused almost exclusively on development,” Walden said. “Now we’ve redefined the goal of the studio to not be the biggest but to be the most profitable and smartest. (To do that), we need to nurture the assets we already have on the air. It’s a mistake to take your eyes off the programs you already have.”

Dramatic experience

Glaser, who had been VP of drama development, will now serve as senior VP of current programming, reporting directly to Newman and Walden. Working under Glaser will be newly upped VP of comedy Steve Sicherman, drama director Bridget Hegarty and comedy director Lianne Siegel.

Walden said Glaser was “a no-brainer” for the new gig.

“The guy’s extraordinary,” she said. “He’s someone who is very aware of what it takes to break each show out individually and focus on their needs. And he has great relationships with producers and writers all over town.”

Managing Bart, Buffy

Under Glaser, studio’s current team will now manage 20th skeins such as “Judging Amy,” “The Simpsons,” “Reba,” “Yes, Dear,” “Buffy the Vampire Slayer,” “Bernie Mac” and “King of the Hill.”

Glaser has been at 20th for six years, having joined the studio as exec director of drama. He had previously been director of development for Alliance Prods., where he developed skeins such as “Due South.”

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