Veteran Warner Bros. exec Bruce Rosenblum has been tapped to oversee all television operations at the studio — a move anticipated since Barry Meyer’s elevation to WB chairman and CEO (Daily Variety, Aug. 2).
Rosenblum, who had been senior veepee of television business management, will serve in the newly created position of exec veep, television. He’ll report directly to Meyer, who announced Rosenblum’s promotion Tuesday.
Rosenblum will have “general oversight and coordination” of Warner Bros.’ TV operations, which encompasses Warner Bros. Television (network), Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution and Telepictures Prods. (syndie), Warner Bros. Intl. Television and Warner Bros. Pay TV, Cable & Network Feature Distribution.
He’ll also act as a liaison with other Time Warner TV-related divisions while managing the studio’s interest in the WB network and its corporate television deals with outside production entities such as Castle Rock Television and Marquee Tollin/Robbins.
Warner Bros. TV division heads, such as WB Television prexy Peter Roth and WB Domestic Television chief Dick Robertson, will continue to report to Meyer, with Rosenblum “serving as the conduit through which all television operations flow,” according to WB’s announcement of Rosenblum’s promotion.
Meyer called Rosenblum “an extraordinarily knowledgeable, talented and highly respected executive who has been an integral part” of Warner Bros.’ TV operations.
“This promotion is well earned and the natural progression of the job he has been doing for the past five years,” Meyer said.
As for Rosenblum’s role in the company, Meyer said Rosenblum “will essentially function as I did for the past 20 years.”
“I viewed my job as providing oversight and strategic guidance, and I think Bruce will do the same,” Meyer told Daily Variety, adding that Rosenblum’s responsibilities will likely change over time.
“As I start moving into other things, other areas in television will move on to Bruce’s plate,” he said. “It’ll be an evolution.”
In an interview with Daily Variety, Rosenblum said Meyer had been “a wonderful mentor” over the past five years. “He’s given me the opportunity to be involved in every facet of our television business. I’m comfortable that I can step into this position and succeed.”
Rosenblum said his goal was “to do for Barry what Barry did for Mr. Daly,” referring to recently retired WB co-chair Bob Daly.
As for the challenges facing Warners’ TV divisions, Rosenblum said a chief priority will be figuring out how “to respond effectively to the changing economics of the network business.”
He noted that the “teams” headed by Roth and WB net topper Jamie Kellner “are getting along much better than the studio and the network did in the past,” but said Warner Bros. Television would not become simply an in-house supplier for the Frog net.
“We’re not looking to produce solely for the WB. We need to balance the two sides.”
Rosenblum had been senior veep for television business management since 1994. In that role, he was involved in the formation of the WB, the acquisition of “Pokemon” for Kids’ WB and license renegotiations for Warner Bros.-produced hits such as “ER” and “The Drew Carey Show.”
Rosenblum joined Warner Bros. in 1989 as part of Warners’ purchase of Lorimar Telepictures, where he had been veep of business affairs.
Before joining Lorimar in 1986, Rosenblum was an entertainment attorney.