People/Biz

Andreae to replace Darnell at Fox

U.S. broadcaster Fox has tapped former Discovery exec Simon Andreae (pictured) to be its new exec VP of alternative entertainment, replacing long-serving reality chief Mike Darnell, who stepped down in June.
October 22, 2013

U.S. broadcaster Fox has tapped former Discovery exec Simon Andreae (pictured) to be its new exec VP of alternative entertainment, replacing long-serving reality chief Mike Darnell, who stepped down in June.

Based in LA and reporting to Fox’s chairman of entertainment Kevin Reilly, Andreae will oversee the network’s slate of unscripted programming and specials, and will be charged with leading “an aggressive development effort to expand Fox’s pipeline of unscripted fare,” the network said in a statement.

“This was a highly sought-after role in town and, given Fox’s legacy in ground-breaking unscripted entertainment, we were looking for a particular caliber of executive – and we found the perfect fit in Simon,” said Reilly.

“Not only is Simon known for innovative thinking, he’s a dynamic leader who has been a producer and a network executive on both sides of the pond, and he has the energy and drive to open a new chapter in Fox unscripted.”

Andreae added: “I’m very grateful to Kevin and his team for giving me this opportunity. My intention is to help build on Fox’s rich heritage of risk and innovation and to help support and extend its range of category-defining shows and world-leading talent.”

The news comes after Andreae announced in August that he would be returning to the UK to launch Scarlet Media, a production company backed by Sony Pictures Television (SPT).

Based in London, Andreae was to serve as MD of the prodco, reporting to SPT’s president of international production Andrea Wong. The fate of this venture is unclear at press time, with a Fox spokesperson telling realscreen that they are unsure whether or not Andreae’s new role will impact his deal with Sony.

Prior to the August announcement, Andreae served as Discovery Channel’s senior VP of development and production for the West Coast, working on titles such as Curiosity, Plane Crash, Naked and Afraid and Fast N’ Loud.

Before Discovery, he held roles at companies including The Incubator and Optomen Television, and at UK network Channel 4.

About The Author
Managing editor with realscreen publication, an international print and online magazine that covers the non-fiction film and television industries. Darah is an award-winning journalist who has spent over two decades covering a wide range of issues from real estate and urban development to immigration, politics and human rights, primarily with The Vancouver Sun. Prior to joining realscreen, she was editor of Stream Daily, realscreen's sister publication covering the dynamic global digital video industry. She also served a stint as a war reporter in Afghanistan for television and print, and was a national business blogger with Yahoo Canada.

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