Sony lands Timberman

25C pair will develop skeins for nets, cable

Sarah Timberman is heading back to Culver City, moving her 25C Prods. shingle to Sony Pictures Television.

Under a new two-year pact at the studio, Timberman and partner Carl Beverly (who heads up her company) will develop comedy and drama projects for network and cable.

Timberman and Beverly are already at work creating series ideas with scribe Jason Smilovic (“Karen Sisco”) and playwright Rick Dresser (“Rounding Third”), both of whom recently signed deals at Sony.

Setting up shop in offices that were once home to “Party of Five” — a show she had a hand in developing — Timberman’s Sony deal reps a homecoming of sorts for her and Beverly.

Timberman spent eight years at Sony (then known as Columbia TriStar TV), working her way up to exec VP of series development before taking on the top programming job at Universal.

Beverly, meanwhile, started his career at Columbia TriStar before moving to Artists Television Group and reuniting with Timberman at U.

Timberman turned to producing in 2003, setting up 25C Prods. at Warner Bros. TV and recruiting Beverly to handle creative affairs. With the expiration of the Warner Bros. deal, Timberman said she saw an opportunity in joining the smaller, independent Sony studio.

“They really are the final outpost in terms of being the last independent,” she said. “That presents its challenges but also presents a real opportunity. Carl and I love that they are up for taking creative risks, which they’ve demonstrated with some of the shows they’re behind, like ‘The Shield’ and ‘Huff.’

“(Sony Pictures TV programming prexy) Russ (Krasnoff) and (development senior VP) Jamie (Erlicht) have been incredibly supportive of all the ideas that Carl and I are most passionate about,” Timberman said.

Sony also holds fewer pod deals, allowing 25C wider range to develop several projects, she said. The production house hopes to develop at least 12 scripts this development season, and is already in talks with several more writers about potential projects.

“I think people are feeling this year that there aren’t too many rules that need to be followed,” Timberman said. “Look at the spectrum from ‘The Daily Show’ to ‘The Shield’ to ‘Desperate Housewives.’ It demonstrates that people are hungry for series that have the courage of their convictions and that take a strong point of view.”

Timberman and Beverly will serve as executive producers on everything that comes out of 25C. Timberman said it was important to her that Beverly make the jump with her to Sony.

For his part, Krasnoff said he’d always “admired Sarah’s instinct.”

“She’s one of the best creative producers I have had the pleasure of working with,” he said.

(Josef Adalian contributed to this report.)

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