Buena Vista TV Prods. chairman Lloyd Braun has enticed former ABC drama chief Greer Shephard back to Disney with an exclusive overall deal for her and Emmy-nominated director/producer Michael M. Robin.
The multiyear deal calls for Shephard and Robin (“NYPD Blue”) to develop and produce new series for the studio. The duo, who worked together and with Braun when he was president of Brillstein-Grey on last season’s ABC drama “C-16,” will function as non-writing executive producers. Robin also will direct projects for Disney.
Braun hopes that Robin and Shephard essentially will function as de facto drama chiefs at the studio, beefing up the one-hour business, an area where Disney has had little success in recent years. The pair will develop and nurture new writers and executive produce projects with established writers as well.
Shephard, the daughter of former Warner Bros. TV and CBS programming chief Harvey Shephard, began her career at Disney in 1989 as a manager of comedy and drama development for Walt Disney TV.
She joined ABC in 1991 as an associate director of current series programming and was promoted director of drama series in 1993 and vice president in 1995. After ABC Entertainment president Jamie Tarses came aboard, she reorganized the web into comedy and drama teams, with Shephard heading both current and drama development.
Shephard ankled the network last year after Rob Dwek was brought in as the No. 2 executive to Tarses. Dwek’s tenure did not last long after Stu Bloomberg was installed above Tarses as chairman of ABC Entertainment. Notably, it was Bloomberg that first promoted Shephard to vice president in 1995 when he was executive vice president of primetime at ABC.
While at ABC, Shephard helped develop dramas such as “Relativity,” “Cracker,” “Dangerous Minds” and “Gun,” and since leaving the web last year, she served as a producer on ABC dramas “Nothing Sacred” and “C-16.”
Robin previously worked as a co-executive producer on ABC’s “NYPD Blue” at a time when it received an Emmy Award for best dramatic series. He also was nominated for a best director Emmy Award for his work on the series.
Prior to “NYPD Blue,” Robin was a supervising producer on “Civil Wars” and a producer on both “Cop Rock” and “L.A. Law,” which won the Emmy Award for best dramatic series during his tenure. Robin most recently served as executive producer on “C-16.”
“Greer and Michael are gifted producers with great taste and strong relationships throughout the creative community,” Braun said. “They will play a major role in the rebuilding of our one-hour business.”
The overall deal is one of Braun’s first and largest since he took the job overseeing Disney’s TV division in April.