Paramount TV is looking to expand its presence in the unscripted world. To spearhead those efforts, the company has hired Eben Davidson as SVP of development.
Davidson comes from Viacom sibling Paramount Pictures, where he was SVP of acquisitions and production, working on films like Richard Linklater’s “Everybody Wants Some!!” and Charlie Kaufman and Duke Johnson’s Oscar-nominated animation joint “Anomalisa.”
“With the tremendous success of our Emmy-nominated show ‘Grease: Live,’ we are committed to exploring new opportunities for compelling unscripted and live television events,” said Amy Powell, president of Paramount TV. “Eben has been an integral part of the Paramount family and we’re thrilled to have him join our team. His diverse skill-set within development and acquisitions will aide Paramount TV’s global footprint as we push the boundaries of content across multiple platforms.”
Davidson makes the jump as Viacom is in talks to sell a 49% stake in Paramount Pictures to Chinese giant Dalian Wanda Group. The sticking point is aging media mogul Sumner Redstone’s adamant refusal to sell any part of Paramount; Redstone owns 80% of Viacom’s voting shares through his company National Amusements, Inc.
Paramount TV has experienced a renaissance of sorts in the last couple years. The studio was behind the aforementioned “Grease: Live” production on Fox, and has sold two high-profile series to Netflix: “Maniac,” directed by Cary Fukunaga and starring Emma Stone and Jonah Hill, and Selena Gomez-produced “Thirteen Reasons Why,” based on the YA novel by Jay Asher.