'Six Feet Under' producer to serve as exec VP of scripted dev

“Six Feet Under” exec producer and former WB Entertainment prexy David Janollari is joining MTV’s programming team.

Announcement wasn’t a surprise; Janollari had been in talks for more than a month about joining the cabler; an agreement had been more or less reached before the holidays. Janollari will serve as exec VP of scripted development at the youth-oriented cabler.

Move comes as MTV, still known mostly for unscripted fare like vets “The Real World” and “The Hills,” as well as new media sensation “Jersey Shore,” continues to invest more heavily in scripted projects.

Janollari will report to MTV programming prexy Tony DiSanto, who aggressively recruited the exec and formally made the announcement on Wednesday.

“David has a proven track record of commercial and critical success as both a buyer and a seller,” DiSanto said. “He is a perfect fit for this key role in our programming organization, as we put a laser focus on scripted content.”

Janollari joins a programming team that also includes Liz Gateley, Chriss Linn, Brent Haynes, Dave Sirulnick and Steve Tseckares.

At MTV, Janollari will be charged with overseeing the development of comedies and dramas, as well as longforms that will double as backdoor pilots.

“I grew up with MTV and have always admired the power of the brand,” Janollari said. “I’m excited to help lead them into the scripted series world at a time when young audiences want entertainment that speaks to their generation.”

As co-founder of Greenblatt/Janollari, Janollari and former partner Bob Greenblatt (the entertainment prexy at Showtime) were behind “Six Feet Under,” “The Hughleys,” “American Family” and the longform “Elvis,” among other projects. Janollari’s lengthy resume also includes a lengthy stint at Warner Bros. TV, where he developed series such as “Friends” and “The Drew Carey Show.”

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