PaxNet taps Sagansky

Former Sony, CBS exec now consultant

Gearing up for the Aug. 31 launch of PaxNet, Paxson Communications has enlisted former Sony Pictures and CBS honcho Jeff Sagansky as a programming consultant to the family-friendly broadcast network.

For the moment, Sagansky says he has no plans to take on broader responsibilities or a permanent post at PaxNet. “I’m just trying to help them as they put together their schedule,” he told Daily Variety Wednesday.

PaxNet’s program sked at launch will consist mostly of off-network series, including the spiritually themed CBS hit “Touched By an Angel” and vintage fare like “Eight is Enough,” “Barnaby Jones” and “The Love Boat.”

Paxson last week struck a carriage deal with cable giant Tele-Communications Inc. that promises to boost the national clearance level for the PaxNet web above the 80% mark.

TV biz watchers have been curious about Sagansky’s next move since he ankled as co-prexy of Sony Pictures Entertainment in February.

There has been speculation he would move away from the corporate-studio world to a more entrepreneurial endeavor like PaxNet. Before his stint with Sony, Sagansky spent four years as president of CBS Entertainment.

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