PSN Fills Plate

Partner Stations Network, a 2-year-old programming consortium consisting of 36 stations from five station groups, has increased its development staff and is broadening the number of genres on its programming plate.

Michael Lambert, the managing partner of the consortium, also announced the company has promoted Jake Tauber to senior VP, and Adam Tyler to veepee of programming and development.

They will oversee four new development associates: James Weitz, formerly research director for Fox TV Stations Prods, and a development associate at Scott Rudin Prods.; Leigh Wetzel, a production coordinator and development associate at FTSP; Anita Trissel, a publicist for “Jones & Jury”; and Abby Kohn, a filmmaker and writer for the National Endowment for the Arts.

The PSN station groups, which collectively cover 21% of the U.S. and are seeking to become Hollywood players, want to pursue a more aggressive strategy.

Instead of trying out programming once a year, the broadcasters are looking to introduce new shows two or three times a year, and ultimately once every quarter. The next on-air test is slated to begin in June.

Despite several attempts to introduce new fare last year, PSN has yet to have a firstrun success. But the group did manage to squeeze 50 episodes out of the reality series “Behind Bars,” which is now being sold in foreign territories and may be repackaged for the domestic market.

PSN will be looking at new genres with higher budgets. Overall, it has 14 shows in development, some of which were conceived in-house.

The station partners – LIN Broadcasting, Malrite Communications, Pappas Telecasting, Providence Journal and River City Broadcasting – are willing to increase their programming investments for one primary reason, according to Lambert.

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