Paul Jackson, head of Granada America, the British producer’s U.S. arm, is being wooed back to Blighty to head ITV’s entertainment commissioning team.
Jackson, one of British TV’s most experienced entertainment toppers, is understood to have discussed the gig with ITV’s new director of television, Simon Shaps.
It was Shaps who, as CEO of Granada, persuaded the former entertainment topper at BBC TV to run L.A.-based Granada America. There Jackson has had several successes, including “Nanny 9/11,” “Hit Me Baby One More Time” and “Hell’s Kitchen USA.”
Shaps, who is restructuring ITV’s commissioning team, needs to fill the vacancy left by the surprise announcement that Claudia Rosencrantz is leaving ITV after 10 years as its controller of entertainment.
If Jackson, who plans to return to London this year, is appointed, he would take over responsibility for all entertainment and comedy shows across ITV’s portfolio of channels.
Getting the right person to replace Rosencrantz is vital for Shaps, and there are only so many execs who fit the bill.
Another exec being suggested is Duncan Gray, who moved from Granada in the U.K. to work for ABC in the U.S.