Inside Move: Greenblatt on top of Showtime list

Aronson, Cooper also contenders for position

Showtime chairman-CEO Matt Blank has moved closer to naming the pay cabler’s new programming president, shortening the list of potential candidates to a few major contenders.

Topping that list is Greenblatt/Janollari Studio partner and former Fox exec Bob Greenblatt.

Greenblatt, who did not return calls seeking comment, is an executive producer on one of HBO’s hottest shows, “Six Feet Under.” Greenblatt/Janollari produces a wide range of shows, including the upcoming Eve vehicle on UPN, “The Opposite Sex.”

Greenblatt ankled his top Fox gig in 1997 to form the studio alongside ex-Warner Bros. exec David Janollari; the duo immediately developed the laffer “The Hughleys.”

It’s unclear what Greenblatt’s departure would mean to the indie production shingle, including whether Janollari would continue to go it alone.

Showtime insiders warn, however, that nothing has been decided and a deal has yet to be made.

Other names still mentioned around town for the Showtime job include Regency TV topper Peter Aronson and former HBO Pictures prexy Bob Cooper, who most recently was CEO of Artisan Pictures.

Current programming prexy Jerry Offsay announced in March his intention to leave the cabler at the end of the year. Blank told reporters at this week’s NCTA cable convention in Chicago that Showtime’s new programming topper likely will be announced within the month.

A Showtime rep declined comment.