Following Bela Bajaria‘s promotion to president of Universal Television, the studio has named Mike Clements as its new exec vice president of comedy development and Jim Donnelly as senior vice president of comedy development.
Clements most recently comes from animation studio Bento Box where he was head of creative development and original programming. Donnelly was previously vice president of comedy development at CBS Studios.
Clements joins Universal TV as former exec VP of comedy development for the studio, Tracey Pakosta, has shifted to NBC as exec VP of comedy programming. Clements and Pakosta previously worked together at the WB.
“Mike Clements is an extremely well-regarded comedy executive,” said Bajaria. “In addition to being very supportive and collaborative with writers, he is excited about helping us launch great comedies. We are pleased to bring him on board to head comedy at the studio where we remain committed to producing innovative and smart break-out comedies.”
Of Donnelly, she commeneted, “We’re additionally thrilled that Jim Donnelly has joined us from CBS Studios. I have a longtime relationship with Jim and know firsthand how well he works with the creative community. He’ll be a great addition to our strong comedy team, which includes our talented VP of comedy, Dan Shear.”
Prior to Bento Box where he co-created “The Legends of Chamberlain Heights,” which was ordered at Comedy Central, Clements was the president of Tom Werner’s Good Humor Television. He also exec produced HBO’s animated comedy “The Life & Times of Tim,” MTV’s “Good Vibes” and NBC’s sitcom “Are You There, Chelsea?” Before becoming a producer in 2006, he spent 14 years as a network comedy exec at both Fox and, as previously mentioned, the WB in their early years, where he worked on “Married With Children,” “The Simpsons,” “Mad TV,” “King of the Hill,” “That ’70s Show,” “Malcolm in the Middle,” “The Jamie Kennedy Experiment” and “Reba,” among others.
The appointment, first reported by Deadline, marks a full-circle moment of sorts for Clements who began his TV career at NBC where he was an assistant in the photo department.
At CBS Studios, Donnelly worked on “The Odd Couple,” “The Millers,” Jane Lynch’s upcoming CBS series “Angel From Hell” and the CW’s “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend,” which was originally developed for Showtime. Previously, he worked in comedy at Paramount Television and CBS Productions.
Donnelly will report to Clements, who will report to Bajaria.