NBCUniversal International has tapped Gareth Neame, a driving force behind “Downton Abbey,” as executive chairman of Carnival Films.
In his new role, which is effective immediately, Neame will continue to lead Carnival’s production pipeline and creative vision within the NBCUniversal International Studios division.
“Gareth has done a remarkable job with Carnival, creating some of the most engaging, award-winning television of all time,” said Kevin MacLellan, chairman of global distribution and international at NBCUniversal. “The team he has built at Carnival is first-rate, and I am confident that the new structure sets them up for even greater success in the future.”
Neame, who has been managing director of Carnival since 2004, has helped the company become one of Britain’s foremost drama producers and has been the creative driving force behind the company’s most acclaimed productions, including “Downton Abbey” and current shows such as “The Last Kingdom,” Stan Lee’s “Lucky Man” and “Jamestown.”
As part of the executive shuffle, David O’Donoghue, who’s been COO of Carnival since 2012, and Nigel Marchant, who previously exec produced “The Last Kingdom,” “Dracula” and “Downton Abbey,” will take on day-to-day leadership responsibilities as joint managing directors. Aliboo Bradbury, who has been head of business affairs at Carnival since 2006, was tapped as commercial director.
“I am delighted to step into the role of executive chairman, in order to focus on Carnival’s content strategy and creative vision, allowing David and Nigel to excel in more expansive creative leadership roles. With the invaluable support of Aliboo and the formidably talented senior team, these moves position us perfectly to continue our mission of producing the very best drama for global audiences,” said Neame, who also worked as head of drama commissioning at the BBC during his 30-year career in scripted drama.
One of Europe’s most respected TV executives, Neame has been honored with the Producers Guild of America’s David L. Wolper Award, appointed an officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) for his services to drama and has recently been named as one of the Global Media 500 by Variety.
Neame, O’Donoghue and Marchant will work closely with the rest of the Carnival management team, led by executive producer Richard Fell, head of production Charlotte Ashby, head of development Joanna Strevens and executive producer Jessica Pope, who joined Carnival from BBC Studios in 2017.