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Brian Edwards returns to Mark Burnett Prods.

Exec returns to COO post after short stint at Relativity

Brian Edwards is reuniting with Mark Burnett’s production venture following his short stint as chief operating officer of Relativity Media.

Edwards is returning to the COO post at Mark Burnett Prods., the job he had until exited in May for Relativity.

Word of Edwards’ departure from Relativity surfaced late Thursday. He’s the fifth high-level exec to ankle Relativity in the past year.

“I had to follow my heart, which was in being in business with Mark,” said Edwards. “This is where I wanted to be for the future.”

Edwards was among the key architects of the joint venture that Burnett’s company inked in April with Hearst Entertainment for multiplatform production and live events (Daily Variety, April 12).

As COO, Edwards will oversee the full range of Burnett’s businesses, including maintaining numerous unscripted series on air and in development, as well as a planned foray into scripted TV. In addition, Burnett is active in a number of digital initiatives.

But the firm’s connection to Hearst will clearly be a priority, according to Edwards, who indicated both entities are interested in expansion opportunities both stateside and abroad. Edwards declined to discuss specific ventures.