David Grant, president of Fox TV Studios, will exit the company he founded, Fox said Wednesday.
Insiders say Angela Shapiro, former president of ABC Family, will take his place, although Fox declined to confirm that.
"A successor will be named in the next few days," said Teri Everett, spokeswoman for the Fox Entertainment Group.
"Starting a major new studio has been the most fun a person can have and still get paid. For that opportunity, I owe a lot to Peter Chernin and Rupert Murdoch," said Grant. "However, FtvS and Regency TV have reached a maturity level, and I've been dong this an awfully long time by Hollywood standards. I think it's time to cook up something new."
Insiders say Chernin and Murdoch were increasingly frustrated with investing money at Fox TV Studios without developing hit TV shows, at least getting credit.
Fox TV Studios did work with joint venture Regency Television on Malcom in the Middle, which made a bundle in syndication sales, but ultimately Regency got the credit for developing the show. Fox TV Studios also worked with Regency on developing The Bernie Mac Show, which also is expected to bring in millions in back-end revenue.
In addition, insiders say, Fox TV Studios was charged with developing reality programming for the network but often ran into interference from Fox reality guru Mike Darnell, who didn't want to cede control over his domain to anyone outside his group.
Fox Television Studios was created by Grant to develop low-cost, alternative TV programming. It also houses Regency, which is a joint venture between Fox TV Studios and New Regency Enterprises.
Regency has Method & Red in production for Fox this summer, and pilots Taste and the Untitled Jason Alexander Project at CBS. At The WB, Regency has Shacking Up, starring Fran Drescher. Also at The WB, Fox TV Studios has The Robinsons: Lost in Space.
Contributing editor Paige Albiniak has been covering the business of television for nearly 25 years. She is a longtime contributor to Next TV, Broadcasting + Cable and Multichannel News. She concurrently serves as editorial director for entertainment marketing association Promax. She has written for such publications as TVNewsCheck, The New York Post, Variety, CBS Watch and more. Albiniak was B+C’s Los Angeles bureau chief from September 2002 to 2004, and an associate editor covering Congress and lobbying for the magazine in Washington, D.C., from January 1997-September 2002.
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