Daniels departing WB post

Susanne Daniels is exiting her position as The WB's co-president of entertainment, a move network sources insist is voluntary, pointing to Daniel's solid reputation at The WB.

Citing a need to spend more time with her family - Daniels just gave birth to her third child - and a need to do something different, Daniels steps down from her top-level gig at time when The WB saw ratings gains during the most recent 2000/2001 TV season.

Under the direction of Daniels and WB co-president Jordan Levin, for instance, veteran Felicity has seemingly escaped last year's almost cancellation and rookie Gilmore Girls has turned into a legitimate hit for the network. It's unclear when Daniels move will be made official, but she is expected to eventually shift into an independent development/production role within the AOL/Time Warner family. Levin will become The WB's sole president of entertainment.

Daniels might have been spurred on to take a different role within the company as new opportunities seem to be materializing following the finalized AOL/Time Warner merger - Jamie Kellner's jump from WB chief to chair of Turner Broadcasting, for one. Apparently, Daniels first contemplated doing something else when she promoted Levin from executive vice president of programming to entertainment co-president, earlier this year just prior to going on maternity leave.

Daniels has served as co-head of entertainment since 1998, first joining The WB in 1994 as chief of primetime series. She's thought to be key in launching WB hits 7th Heaven, soon-to-depart Buffy, the Vampire Slayer and Dawson's Creek. In other WB executive shifts, Jed Petrick, WB president and chief operating officer is likely to change his base from New York to Burbank, a move that's expected to ease Levin's transition working without Daniels. - Susanne Ault