Richard Licata to reunite with former cable boss

Showtime PR topper Richard Licata is moving to NBC Entertainment, where he’ll be reunited with the division’s chairman, Robert Greenblatt.

In the newly created post of executive VP of communications, Licata will oversee publicity for both the Peacock and Universal Media Studios — both of which come under Greenblatt’s supervision.

It was widely anticipated Licata would make the jump to join forces again with former Showtime programming chief Greenblatt, who sources note had a clause in his contract with the pay cabler that prevented him from luring over anyone else for a year after his hire. Licata is coming in just over 12 months since Greenblatt came to NBCUniversal.

“After having worked closely with Rich twice before at networks that were in challenging transitions, I’m so pleased he will be joining NBC as we look to set a new course for this company,” said Greenblatt.

The two have worked together at three different companies over nearly two decades, culminating in a seven-year stint at Showtime where they presided over a period of rejuvenation for a premium channel once dismissed as a distant also-ran to category leader HBO.

Prior to Showtime, Greenblatt and Licata worked together at Fox Broadcasting Co. during the 1990s. While Greenblatt was executive VP of primetime programming, Licata was senior VP of publicity., where he helped launch series including “The X Files,” “Party of Five” and “Beverly Hills, 90210.”

Prior to Fox, Licata did stints at HBO and Rogers & Cowan.

No word yet on who will step in for Licata at Showtime, where reps confirmed a search is underway to replace him in the top job.

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