NEW YORK — As part of a revamp of its “20/20” franchise, ABC News has appointed veteran execs David Tabacoff and Bob Lange to oversee the Monday and Thursday editions of the newsmag, respectively.
Victor Neufeld, who has overseen the “20/20” franchise since 1988, made an internal announcement to ABC News staff on Friday. Neufeld was promoted to senior exec producer of the trio of primetime newsmags last month.
Tabacoff, most recently a senior producer at “20/20,” has been promoted to executive producer and will oversee “20/20 Downtown.” While “Downtown” has been mocked for its edgy reports about body piercings, its “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire” lead-in has helped turn it into a Nielsen powerhouse.
Lange, a veteran “20/20” producer, will serve as acting exec producer of “Primetime Thursday,” which is likely to flourish in its post-“Millionaire” slot this fall.
ABC News announced last month that it is revamping its primetime newsmag in order to give each edition a distinctive personality with its own exec producers. At that time, veteran ABC News producer David Sloan was named exec producer of “20/20 Friday.” As part of the exec shuffle, “20/20” producer Lisa Soloway has been promoted to senior producer, story development, for all three newsmags.
On Mondays, “Downtown” will be toned down for an 8 p.m. timeslot, while Thursday’s edition will try to recapture the heyday of “Primetime Live.” Friday’s show will be the most traditional, with Barbara Walters putting an even stronger imprint on the program.