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King World taps Nalevansky, Coffey

Move expected, reunites exex

King World Prods. has tapped Steven Nalevansky to head its programming and development department as senior VP.

He will report to Roger King, chairman/CEO of CBS Enterprises and King World Prods.

Move was expected following last week’s announcement that Andy Friendly is ankling as King World’s prexy of programming and production (Daily Variety, Feb. 28).

TV exec Vanessa Coffey is also on her way to King World as VP of development.

In addition to overseeing King World’s development slate, Nalevansky will also supervise programming on King World’s “Hollywood Squares” and “Inside Edition.”

Coffey will collaborate with him on development of new projects.

Royal reunion

The hires reunite Nalevansky and Coffey at King World. The two execs worked together previously at the company when he was senior VP of programming and production. He brought her in to head up a “Little Rascals” project and to oversee kids programming in general.

Nalevansky’s previous King World stint came prior to his recent work as a founding partner in Montecito Valley Prods., which developed the talk pilot “The Real Deal” under an exclusive deal with Twentieth Television.

While at King World before, he oversaw production and programming on such skeins as “The Roseanne Show.”

Coffey’s prior work at King World was under an overall deal with Coffey-Ballantine. She and her partner Jim Ballantine oversaw alternative, kids and ani programming development.

Syndie priorities

As for changes in exec structure for King World’s programming, development and production efforts, Nalevansky’s priorities will be new products for syndication, allowing the company’s production execs on both coasts and each show’s exec producer to spearhead production efforts.

Nalevansky said that Coffey’s appointment does not mean King World is headed toward the kids arena, despite her extensive experience in kids programming (she spent nearly a decade as exec producer and VP of animation at Nickelodeon, where she developed and exec produced such Nick hits as “Rugrats”).

‘Golden gut’

“What I’ve learned about Vanessa is that she has what I call — and her former partner calls — ‘the golden gut,’ ” Nalevansky said. “Vanessa is absolutely passionate about reality programming. She has, as a producer and an executive, a great instinct for programming. We won’t be spending time now in children’s programs.”

Coffey recently left her work in kids programming to exec produce with Film Garden Prods. two reality pilots, “Intervention” for USA Network and “Women in Blue” for TLC.

Nalevansky previously did a stint as senior VP of creative affairs at Twentieth Television, supervising development of scripted and reality programming.

In addition, he worked at Paramount Domestic Television, where he rose to senior VP of creative affairs, developed “Hard Copy” and supervised “The Arsenio Hall Show.”

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