Fremantle taps Endemol program exec

Young gets creative for 'Idol'

Endemol USA exec Eugene Young is leaving that company to take on the newly created role of chief creative officer for “American Idol” producer FremantleMedia North America.

Young will be the No. 2 exec at the company on the programming front, reporting directly to CEO Cecile Frot-Coutaz. He’ll oversee all development and programming for the company, which has made known its plans to greatly expand its presence in original scripted production.

As senior veepee of programming and development at Endemol, Young was involved in the production of the ABC megahit “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” and NBC’s “Fear Factor.” New gig will have him working on everything from “American Idol” to “The Price Is Right.”

Frot-Coutaz said Young’s experience at a company such as Endemol was key.

Like Fremantle, “Endemol’s a big, international company,” she said. “He understands the business model we have and how to make it work, and he understands the importance of communication with the rest of the world.”

Young’s hiring, along with several other recent appointments, comes as Fremantle prepares to move beyond its success in translating Euro formats to the States.

“The strategy is to develop original shows for the U.S. market,” Frot-Coutaz said.

Young will oversee nearly two dozen creative execs and producers. Before Endemol, Young was showrunner on “Extra” and exec producer for 11 p.m. newscasts at KCBS in Los Angeles and WABC in Gotham.

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