Kevin Reilly Splits TBS and TNT Programming in Bid to Redefine Originals

Turner Would Like to Better Compete in Prestige Shows

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As one of his first moves at Turner Broadcasting, Kevin Reilly is splitting TBS and TNT's original programming team into two separate units.

It's the first step in Mr. Reilly's goal of ramping up original programming at both networks. Mr. Reilly, who previously led the entertainment division at Fox, was named president of TBS and TNT and chief creative officer of Turner Entertainment in November.

His hire semed to suggest that TBS and TNT would redefine their programming strategy to better compete with the likes of cable rivals AMC and FX. Turner's flagship entertainment networks, while having broad appeal that attract large viewerships, haven't won the same critical praise as rivals like those and aren't commanding big dollars from streaming platforms. Much of TBS' success, for example, has come from reruns of "The Big Bang Theory," rather than original comedies.

Sandra Dewey, who previously handled business affairs for the networks, has been promoted to president, TNT and TBS Productions. She will now be responsible for running the expanded in-house production arm.

Sarah Aubrey, a veteran TV and film producer will serve as exec VP-original programming for TNT, and Brett Weitz has been promoted to exec VP-original programming for TBS. Mr. Weitz previously served as senior VP-development for TNT and TBS. All three executives will report to Mr. Reilly.

"Over the next couple of years, we will continue to sharpen and evolve our brands by doubling down on original programming and being tenacious about our networks' value proposition," Mr. Reilly said in a statement. "These leadership appointments are the important first step in that direction."

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