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NBC hires Igbokwe to lead drama development

Showtime vet replaces Laura Lancaster

NBC has tapped former Showtime veteran Pearlena Igbokwe as its new head of drama development, the network announced Tuesday.

The hire comes less than 24 hours after news of the departure of Laura Lancaster, who held the post since 2009. NBC noted Tuesday that Lancaster will segue into a consultatory role.

As executive VP of drama development, Igbokwe will oversee all drama development.

“Pearlena has forged an impressive track record over her successful career that has earned her the admiration of the creative community,” said NBC Entertainment president Jennifer Salke, to whom Igbokwe will report. “She will bring a unique perspective to development that will help us reach our goal of once again making NBC the home of some of the best and most respected dramas on television.”

Igbokwe spent 20 years at Showtime, most recently as senior VP original programming. She had a guiding hand in virtually every original series that emerged from the pay cabler from reigning drama “Dexter” to upcoming new addition “Masters of Sex.”

She left the network earlier this year and was replaced by Robin Gurney, formerly of Imagine Television.

The hire reunites Igbokwe with her former Showtime boss Robert Greenblatt, with whom she worked for seven years. She is the latest Showtime exec to migrate to NBC, including Richard Licata, executive VP of communications; Len Fogge, president of marketing and digital; Robert Hayes, executive VP of digital, and Dianne Hatlestad, VP of talent management.

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