Until last week, the debate over who would take over NBC and Universal’s merged syndication units focused on two men: Ed Wilson and Steve Rosenberg.
Wilson, who helped launch NBC Enterprises’ off-net and first-run syndication operations (and is also a veteran of CBS’ syndie sector), seemed to have the inside track.
But his de facto competitor, Rosenberg, who led the successful Universal Domestic TV outfit since 1998, also had the experience — and a boffo track record.
The race to head up the combined unit took an unexpected turn April 21, when word leaked that both execs were leaving their respective companies.
Wilson says his contract was up, which made him decide — after much soul-searching — to leave the syndication business altogether.
“The end of a contract forces you to look at your life and the next three, four, five years,” he says. “I just decided maybe it was time for Ed Wilson to do something different.”
Rosenberg, meanwhile, wasn’t talking.
But syndie sources say the exec had already packed his bags after being told that Wilson had gotten the job.
With both execs out of the picture, it’s not clear who will eventually run the new NBC Universal syndication division.
But it is clear who wouldn’t be heading it: Neither Wilson nor Rosenberg.