NBC U exec adds duties

Zaslav gets full plate

NBC Universal has expanded the duties of David Zaslav, its president of cable TV, to include domestic TV syndication and new digital technologies.

Zaslav, 45, will take over these responsibilities from Frederick Huntsberry, president of distribution for NBC U, who will shift his focus to international distribution. Huntsberry’s title will be prexy of NBC U Intl.

Company is tapping in Zaslav an exec who’s served as point person in major deals for all of its cable networks, engineering long-term renewals with satellite distributors like DirecTV and cable operators like Time Warner Cable.

Zaslav also has spearheaded NBC U’s move to distribute some of its primetime series on NBC, USA and Sci Fi Channel to DirecTV and Comcast for video-on-demand replay within hours of their network telecast.

Under Zaslav, NBC Universal has extensive plans to transmit its shows to the Internet, iTunes, cell phones and other wireless devices.

Zaslav will also be charged with energizing NBC U’s domestic-syndication division, which has not come up with any hit shows in the last decade. Its expensive “Jane Pauley Show” was a flop two seasons ago, and “Martha,” which premiered in September, has performed only modestly in the Nielsen ratings.

NBC U’s syndie hope for next season is taker “The Megan Mullally Show.”

Among the cable nets Zaslav will continue to supervise are USA, Sci Fi, CNBC, MSNBC, Bravo and such recently developed channels as Sleuth and Universal HD. The Spanish-language Telemundo is also part of his portfolio.

Zaslav repots to Randy Falco, president of the NBC U TV Networks Group. Both men are based in New York. Los Angeles-based Huntsberry, who formerly reported to Falco, will now report to NBC Universal topper Bob Wright.

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