Hulu and ABC are ‘Complementary,’ Says Entertainment President Craig Erwich

Craig Erwich, president ABC Entertainment and Hulu Originals, during the winter 2022 TCA press tour executive session for ABC.
Craig Erwich at the ABC/Hulu TCA presentation. (Image credit: ABC Entertainment)

Hulu dramedy The Great, about Catherine the Great ruling Russia, will have a third season, shared Craig Erwich, president, Hulu Originals & ABC Entertainment, during the networks’ TCA Press Tour event. “At Hulu, you’re not going to get Catherine the Great as a sleepy historical drama,” Erwich said. 

Erwich shared about both Hulu and ABC. On the broadcast side, he raved about new mockumentary comedy Abbott Elementary. Creator and star Quinta Brunson “is one of the brightest and funniest new voices to emerge on television,” he said, calling the classroom comedy “a worthy successor to The Office.

Erwich said Hulu features “a library of many of the best shows ever made” and saluted the live events on ABC, including the Oscars and the CMAs. The Academy Awards, Erwich said, will have a host. Will Packer will produce. “Will really has his finger on the pulse of popular culture and entertainment,” said Erwich. 

Erwich described a “very complementary relationship with minimal audience duplication” between ABC and Hulu. He pointed out Dancing with the Stars getting scores of young viewers on its Hulu airings. ABC series can triple and even quadruple their viewership on Hulu, he added. 

“We’re not throwing anything at the wall to see what sticks,” he said, adding that “each platform has a different opportunity for the artist to tell their story.”

The best measure of a Hulu series, he said, is its cultural impact. He singled out Only Murders in the Building, Pen15 and Dopesick for making a major mark. Only Murders, he added, is Hulu’s most watched comedy. 

Coming up is Pam & Tommy February 2, about Pam Anderson, Tommy Lee, and one of their home movies. Erwich called it “one of the wildest, sharpest, most entertaining shows Hulu has ever launched.”

And back on the ABC side, Erwich was asked about Grey’s Anatomy, which got a season 19 order yesterday. 

“It’s still at the top of its game creatively,” said Erwich, who called it “our most watched drama.”

There’s no end in sight for the doc drama. “We will have as much Grey’s as we can have,” Erwich said. ■

Michael Malone

Michael Malone, senior content producer at B+C/Multichannel News, covers network programming, including entertainment, news and sports on broadcast, cable and streaming; and local broadcast television. He hosts the podcasts Busted Pilot, about what’s new in television, and Series Business, a chat with the creator of a new program, and writes the column “The Watchman.” He joined B+C in 2005. His journalism has also appeared in The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Playboy and New York magazine.