×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Fox Names Rob Wade Alternative Entertainment President

Fox has tapped a new head of alternative programming.

Veteran producer Rob Wade has been named president, alternative entertainment and specials, the Fox Broadcasting announced Monday. Corie Henson, who had led alternative, will continue with the network as executive vice president, reporting to Wade.

Wade most recently served as executive producer and showrunner for ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars.” He previously was head of entertainment development at BBC Worldwide.

“Unscripted programming is one of the true hallmarks of broadcast television. No other platform captures the immediacy and excitement of a big, broad, breakout unscripted hit like broadcast, and we are committed to expanding our efforts in this area beginning today, with Rob,” said Fox Television Group chairmen and CEOs Gary Newman and Dana Walden, to whom Wade will report. “Rob’s an incredibly well-respected executive and producer with a proven track record working on reality hits. He’s also a creator himself, which makes him the perfect person to lead this charge. We’re confident Rob has the creative vision to shape this area in the same way we’ve shaped the scripted side at the studio through our partnerships with some of the best talent in the business.”

Wade also was as an executive producer on Fox’s “The X Factor” and NBC’s “America’s Got Talent,” and previously served as head of TV at SyCo Entertainment North America. Other series he has worked on include “Grease: You’re the One that I Want,” “Big Brother,” “Dog Eat Dog,” and “I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here.”

“Fox has always been a pioneer in unscripted television, delivering its boldest and most innovative hits,” said Wade. “I am thrilled to be given the chance to work with the best talent in the business and hope I can add to that legacy.”

Fox has not had an executive head of alternative at the president level since Mike Darnell, who spent 15 years at Fox and developed and nurtured “American Idol.” Darnell departed Fox in 2013. His replacement, Simon Andreae — a veteran Discovery Communications executive recruited by former Fox chief Kevin Reilly — who bet big on “Utopia,” an ambitious and costly unscripted series. Fox devoted a significant chunk of its 2014 fall schedule to “Utopia,” airing it twice a week on broadcast and platforming a 24-7 online component. But the show drew moribund ratings and was canceled after two months.

Henson, a former exec at ABC and Electus, replaced Andreae in 2015, and has spearheaded a slate of more cost-effective unscripted efforts, including a number of game shows and cooking-competition series. Last month, Fox greenlit a revival of “Love Connection” with Andy Cohen set to host, “The Bachelor” creator Mike Fleiss serving as executive producer, and Warner Bros. — where Darnell is now unscripted president — producing.

More TV

  • How Mipcom is Adapting Through 'The

    How Mipcom is Adapting to Wider Content Offerings Through 'The Streaming Offensive'

    With the rise of streamers rapidly changing the television industry, it was inevitable that the biggest TV market would have to address the evolution. A year after exploring the so-called big shift in television, the theme of this year’s Mipcom conference is the Streaming Offensive, with sessions from speakers including Amazon Studios’ head of international [...]

  • Ronan Farrow Noah Oppenheim

    NBC News Rebukes Ronan Farrow: 'We Have No Secrets'

    The president of NBC News pushed back on some of the explosive claims made by journalist Ronan Farrow Monday, calling into question an allegation that the NBCUniversal news outlet knew about sexual misconduct by former “Today” anchor Matt Lauer before he was fired in 2017. “Farrow alleges there were employees who reported Lauer’s behavior prior [...]

  • Riviera and Das Boot Sky TV

    Inside Sky Studios' Plan to Be the 'Biggest European TV Producer'

    Comcast forked out $40 billion for Sky and is now backing its CEO Jeremy Darroch’s plan to turbo-charge its pipeline of originals. It has created Sky Studios and will double its programming outlay in a plan that insiders tell Variety will see it spend £1 billion ($1.2 billion) a year on original programming within five [...]

  • Jason Flemyng, Casting Director Lucinda Syson

    Jason Flemyng, Lucinda Syson Launch Film and TV Indie The Kernel Factory (EXCLUSIVE)

    Jason Flemyng, fellow actor Ben Starr, casting director Lucinda Syson, and finance expert Cristiano D’Urso are opening The Kernel Factory, a new U.K.-based film and TV indie. Flemyng has a long list of movie credits including “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button,” “The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen,” and Guy Ritchie’s “Lock, Stock and Two Smoking [...]

  • ITV Wins Pre-Sales for Mipcom Drama

    Pre-Sales for 'Noughts and Crosses' Lead Scripted Deals for ITV Studios at Mipcom

    ITV Studios Global Entertainment has racked up pre-sales for its leading Mipcom title “Noughts and Crosses”, and has unveiled a number of other deals on its drama slate. “Noughts and Crosses” has been acquired by M-Net in Africa, Russia’s More TV, TVNZ in New Zealand and on BBC First across Benelux prior to its launch [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content