Nineteen-year Warner Bros. Entertainment veteran Bruce Rosenblum, the studio’s executive vice president since 1999, will take control of The WB Network as president of the newly formed Warner Bros. Television Group.
Rosenblum, who already had oversight of the studio’s other TV businesses, including worldwide production and distribution, will assume a network that has been struggling in the ratings the past few years and, entering its 11th season, is looking to skew more toward 18-34 year-olds than teens.
WB Network Chairman Garth Ancier, who previously reported to studio Chairman Barry Meyer, will now report to Rosenblum.
“Bruce is one of the most talented and forward-thinking executives working in television today,” Meyer said in a statement. “We’re going to rely on his intelligence, instincts and unparalleled experience to create dynamic new business models under the banner of the Warner Bros. Television Group.”
Added Rosenblum, “Our tremendous scale, both from current production and our library, provides us with a material competitive advantage. [It] positions us well to take full advantage of the enhanced value of content as new and improved distribution channels, such as DVD, video-on-demand, broadband and wireless platforms are developed and mature throughout the world.”
The highly regarded executive is credited with playing a key role as one of founders of The WB Network and as an architect of the record-setting license fee negotiations for some of the studio’s leading hits in their heydays, including Friends, ER and West Wing.
Rosenblum has also sought to develop new revenue streams for television content in emerging media platforms.
For the 2005-2006 season, the Warner Bros. Television Group will produce an unprecedented 51 prime time, first-run, cable and animated series. Warner Bros. Television supplies a record 33 series to the six broadcast networks, plus two series to cable.
The division has been the most prolific producer of prime time series for 16 of the last 19 television seasons.
In addition to WBTV, Rosenblum also oversees the other two television production arms at Warner Bros.: Telepictures Productions, which specializes in programming for the first-run marketplace such as The Ellen DeGeneres Show, and Warner Bros. Animation, a major supplier to Kids’ WB! and sibling Cartoon Network.
He also oversees Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution, which supplies first-run and off-network programming, and Warner Bros. Domestic Cable Distribution, providing television content to the basic cable marketplace, as well as theatrical films to pay and basic cable and the broadcast networks.
Together, the two entities distribute a content library in excess of 48,000 television episodes and more than 600 television movies and miniseries. Warner Bros. International Television Distribution distributes the studio’s theatrical films and television programs to the international television marketplace.
In 1994 Rosenblum became senior vice president, television business management, and was later named executive VP.
Rosenblum first came to Warner Bros. as vice president, business affairs, as part of Warner Communications’ 1989 acquisition of Lorimar Telepictures.
He joined Lorimar in 1986 from Dern, Mason & Floum (now Del, Shaw, Moonves, Tanaka & Finkelstein), where he began his career as an entertainment attorney in 1982.