New network president of entertainment Kevin Reilly comes in off the street, having lost the same job at General Electric's
He's coming back to Rupert Murdoch's media empire after four years with the peacock, and rejoining forces with Peter Liguori. The pair helped get the FX network off the ground seven years ago, and Reilly now takes Liguori's job, propelling the former president up to the chairman's seat.
That moves Liguori from a hands-on executive role into more of a strategy and planning spot. He's tasked with -- buzzwords alert! -- "developing new models for FOX broadcast content to best leverage the brands across all emerging platforms," so the former high-level marketing maven needs to wrap his head around technologies like video on demand, online viewing platforms, TiVo
Reilly joins the team at an interesting time, to use a Cantonese concept. Mega-hit American Idol saw its ratings slip at the end of last season, according to Nielsen, and digital video recorders now play a very real part in advertising contract negotiations. Perhaps the winsome twosome can find new ways to leverage the talents of Sanjaya Malakar (song) and Benji Schwimmer (dance) into new revenue streams. If not, at least Fox has the talent scouts behind Heroes, The Office, Nip/Tuck, The Sopranos, and ER working on how to reach kids today. All critical smash hits, but not all became mass audience magnets.
In the words of News Corp. President Peter Chernin, "The television industry has changed more in the last five years than in the past 20." He's got the right idea, though I'm still trying to get that math to work out.
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Fool contributor Anders Bylund holds no position in any of the companies discussed here. You can check out Anders' holdings if you like, and Foolish disclosure is quality in massive quantity. So there.