Sky Studios, the pay TV network’s production arm, has promoted Gabriel Silver – who oversaw the commissioning of “Chernobyl” – to the role of director of commissioning, drama in the U.K., overseeing a broad slate of ambitious projects.
Silver, who is currently senior commissioning editor and executive producer at Sky Studios, takes up his new role with immediate effect, reporting into chief content officer Jane Millichip.
Most recently Silver has overseen a critically acclaimed slate of Sky Original dramas that includes Emmy and BAFTA-winning series “Chernobyl” and global hit “Gangs of London,” plus returning franchises “Temple,” “Britannia” and “COBRA.” He is currently exec producing upcoming Sky Original dramas “Extinction,” starring Paapa Essiedu, and “The Baby,” a co-production between Sky and HBO.
Prior to joining Sky in 2017, Silver worked at a range of indies including as a development and executive producer at Left Bank Pictures and at Kudos, where he script edited seminal BBC series “Spooks” and “Life on Mars.” Silver also produced the first season of “Clique” for Balloon Entertainment/BBC Studios and developed the series “Waking the Dead” for the BBC.
In his new role, Silver will grow the slate of indie-commissioned drama projects for Sky Studios. With a particular focus on commissioning content for Sky UK, Silver will work closely with Zai Bennett, managing director of content at Sky UK, with projects jointly greenlit by both Sky Studios and Sky UK.
The appointment comes as Sky continues to double its investment in original content by 2024, and lays foundations for Sky Studios Elstree – a new, dedicated state of the art film and TV studio set to open in 2022.
Silver said: “Sky Drama has never been more bold or ambitious than it is today. Over the next 18 months, we’re looking towards a fantastic slate of shows, including at least a dozen new original series or miniseries, all of which aim to push the parameters of what’s considered a Sky drama – to be truly distinctive whilst retaining a core sense of entertainment.
“Thanks to Cameron Roach and the whole drama team, Sky Original dramas have gone from strength to strength, breaking viewing records, winning critical acclaim and finding fans at home and abroad. The U.K. has some of the best creative talent both on-screen and off, and I am thrilled to lead Sky Drama through this next phase as we continue partnering with our world-leading indie community to bring viewers even more new, original content they wouldn’t find anywhere else.”
Millichip said: “Gabriel has an impeccable track-record of delivering shows that encapsulate the creative ambition of Sky Studios. From ‘Chernobyl’ to ‘Gangs of London,’ he has strong instincts in identifying, developing and delivering bold, original content and is well respected as a creative partner by the independent production community.”
Silver’s team includes commissioning editors Manpreet Dosanjh, Paul Gilbert and Liz Lewin. In addition to increasing its investment with indies, Sky Studios also plans to move further into in-house production following the success of RTS-winning Sky Original “The Third Day,” the first in-house production from Sky Studios.