E! Networks in Los Angeles has named Kevin MacLellan senior VP, international. He will oversee Duccio Donati (now VP, international sales), and Cheryl McDermott, who has joined the company as VP, business operations, international. MacLellan fills a post that lay vacant for six months following the departure of Jon Helmrich. COO Kenneth Bettsteller says MacLellan’s appointment signals a new phase in the development of E!’s worldwide operations: ‘I think we’ve lost a lot of opportunities to make a lot of our international channels that already exist even stronger through a more proactive involvement, whether it’s on the marketing, the scheduling, or the distribution end.’
Additionally, the network plans to expand into new territories, such as Western Europe and Asia, and become involved in cross-promotional activities with broadcasters in off-shore territories where the channel currently broadcasts. ‘We cannot be afraid to invest,’ insists Bettsteller. ‘Historically, the company was somewhat shy about making real capital investments abroad. I think we have a different mindset. Under a prudent situation, we’re happy to make the investment in people and dollars to provide a valuable brand.’
The Fall season sees E! launching several new factual series. Celebrity Adventures will be hosted by Kelly Wiglesworth of Survivor fame and Scott Lasky. Vegas Showgirls is a 13×30 minute reality series that documents the lives of six dancers as they struggle to secure a spot on the chorus line. Revealed and Totally True TV Tales both premiere in December and show the behind-the-scenes lives of celebrities. E! programming is broadcast in over 120 countries.