Nickelodeon has given longtime exec Marjorie Cohn a big new title.
Cohn will now serve as president, original programming and development, for the Nickelodeon/MTV Networks Kids and Family Group.
Cohn oversees Nickelodeon’s live-action creative teams, and also handles all original fare for Nick at Nite and Teen Nick (the network formerly known as The N). She also handles all of Nick’s made-for-TV movies, as well as live events such as the “Kids Choice Awards.”
Under her watch, Nick just launched the new series “Victorious,” and also announced plans to bring back existing hits “iCarly,” “Big Time Rush” and “True Jackson, VP,” among other series on the kids net, and “Glenn Martin, DDS” on Nick at Nite.
Promotion was made by Nick/MTVN Kids and Family Group prexu Cyma Zarghami, to whom Cohn reports.
“Margie has been the driving force behind some of Nickelodeon’s biggest hits during her tenure, from classics like ‘Clarissa Explains It All’ to new ones like ‘Big Time Rush.’ She’s demonstrated a knack for identifying properties that connect with our audience,” Zarghami said.
“Victorious” creator Dan Schneider, who just signed a major new production deal with Nick, has worked with Cohn through the years on countless series and said she’s one of the reasons he’s stuck with the kids cabler for so long.
“I could pitch to other networks, but Margie is the kind of network executive a show creator hopes to get,” Schneider said. “She knows when to step in, and she also respects the showrunner’s vision and lets him do his thing.”
On “Victorious,” for example, Schneider said Cohn was instrumental in making the lead character, played by Victoria Justice, more relatable to viewers. Show, which takes place at a performing arts high school, centers on how Justice’s character becomes a pop star.
“Margie had a strong feeling that we needed to keep (the character) a real girl, and experience this the way any normal kid would,” he said. “She didn’t want to make her obnoxious or greedy for stardom, and I was totally on the same page.”
Cohn first joined Nickelodeon in 1988 as a unit manager, and soon became a producer on Nick series such as “Double Dare.” She also created the channel’s “Get the Picture.”
Most recently, Cohn had served as senior vice president of production and development at the channel. Through the years she’s handled series such as “SpongeBob SquarePants,” “The Fairly Oddparents,” “All That” and “Nick News With Linda Ellerbee.”