Susan Rovner Takes Top Programming Job At NBCUniversal
The executive shake-up at NBCUniversal continues as the company recently announced that it would be installing Susan Rovner to handle the programming job at the entertainment company.
Variety reports that Rovner has accepted the offer to head the entertainment programming division of NBCUniversal. The new role will require her to oversee alternative, late-night, unscripted, and scripted programming for NBC and its cable networks. Rovner will also handle the programming for the streaming service Peacock.
The Rovner hiring is part of NBCUniversal’s massive reorganization efforts, according to Variety. As part of its plans for the future, NBCUniversal is looking to turn towards streaming rather than more traditional linear television programming.
Before taking on this role at NBCUniversal, Rovner was co-president of WBTV alongside Brett Paul. Before becoming co-president, Rovner started out as director of drama development back in 1998. Rovner was also the expected successor to Peter Roth, the current chairman and CEO of Warner Bros. Television Studios.
Deadline notes that Rovner’s move to NBCUniversal puts Warner Bros. Television in an awkward place, as it results in a gap in the company’s succession plans for when Roth resigns. Rovner has also been handling more than 60 current original series, with more than half of them for cable platforms.
Rovner was also just a year into her current contract with Warner Bros. Television and was supposedly already in exit conversations with the company a few days ago. Just last week, reports of Rovner’s transfer was dismissed as rumors or speculation.
Rovner’s hiring is just the latest move by television stations and streaming services to prepare for the new entertainment landscape that will emerge after the global coronavirus pandemic. Just two months ago, Netflix announced the hiring of Bozoma Saint John as its new chief marketing officer.
After the announcement of her hiring, Saint John said that she was intent on increasing audience engagement with Netflix. She also highlighted Netflix’s “dynamic legacy” and the role it plays in telling stories for the well-being of the world.
The hiring is also meant to preserve the momentum Netflix has enjoyed as it has emerged as the go-to entertainment choice of people during the lockdowns brought about by the global coronavirus pandemic. The streaming giant was able to add 16 million new paying subscribers to its base, bringing their total to 187 million paid subscribers.
Streaming will probably continue to factor for the entertainment industry moving forward, as it does not look like the global coronavirus pandemic is slowing down any time soon.
According to the Sept. 7 update from the World Health Organization’s COVID-19 dashboard, there are now 27,032,617 confirmed COVID-19 cases worldwide. Deaths caused by COVID-19 are now at 881,464 people.