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TV News Roundup: Joe Bastianich Returns to ‘MasterChef Junior’

In today’s roundup, Joe Bastianich will return as a permanent host to “Masterchef Junior” and Christian Drobnyk has joined National Geographic.

CASTING

Former “MasterChef” and “MasterChef Junior” host Joe Bastianich will return as a permanent judge to Season 6 of “MasterChef Junior,” which will air during the 2017-18 season on Fox. Bastianich will also join chefs Gordon Ramsay, Christina Tosi and Aarón Sánchez on the “MasterChef” Season 8 finale Sept. 20 at 8 p.m. on Fox. Bastianich is a world-renowned restaurateur who co-owns 30 restaurants across the globe, including Michelin Star eatery Del Posto, Babbo, Osteria Mozza and Eataly in the Americas. He previously served as a judge on “MasterChef Junior” for its first three seasons and on “MasterChef” for its first five seasons.

DATES

Stage 13, a digital content brand under the Warner Bros. Digital Networks umbrella, announced that its new anthology series “Two Sentence Horror Stories” will premiere on Oct. 3 on go90, Verizon’s mobile entertainment destination. A fresh and provocative anthology series inspired by the viral fan fiction of two sentence horror stories, the series taps into universal primal fears — death, abandonment, and loneliness — filtered through the anxieties of the most connected and racially diverse generation. Created by writer-director-producer Vera Miao, the series’ episodes each has it’s own director: Miao and acclaimed horror directors Danny Perez, JD Dillard, and Ryan Spindell. New episodes of the five-episode series will premiere every Tuesday.

EXECUTIVE NEWS

Abby MacDonald has been promoted to vice president of original programming for the Katz Networks Bounce, Escape, Grit, and Laff. In her new role, MacDonald’s responsibilities will include development and creative oversight of original series and select specials for Katz Networks, with an emphasis on Bounce as the only network of its kind producing original scripted series. MacDonald is based in Los Angeles and will report to Elizabeth Kealoha, executive vice president of original programming and production.

Christian Drobnyk has joined National Geographic Channels as executive vice president of programming strategy and acquisitions. In this role, he will oversee the program scheduling strategy, planning and acquisitions for National Geographic Channel, Nat Geo WILD and Nat Geo Mundo, reporting to Monroe. Drobnyk will be based in the New York office. Drobnyk joins National Geographic Partners from A+E Networks, where he was senior vice president, programming strategy, acquisitions and co-pro for Lifetime and Lifetime Movie Network.

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