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Ben Silverman Leaves NBC to Start Media Company With Barry Diller

Ben Silverman Leaves NBC For New Media Company

Big news on the TV-executive front this morning: Ben Silverman, who's been the co-chairman of NBC's entertainment division since 2007, is leaving the network to start his own company.

Silverman previously ran the production company Reveille, which brought shows such as The Office and Ugly Betty to US TV networks. His time at NBC was a roller coaster, filled with big (but not always successful) ideas like Jay Leno's move to 10 p.m., shows based on "the greatest stories ever told," and revivals of former hits like Knight Rider and American Gladiators. He also ran afoul of striking writers back in 2008 when he referred to them as "the nerdiest, ugliest, meanest kids in the high school" trying to cancel the prom (aka the Golden Globes). But on the positive side, he worked hard to find ways to keep shows like Friday Night Lights and Chuck on the air.

In Silverman's place at NBC will be Jeff Gaspin, who's been running NBC's cable division since 2007. Silverman, meanwhile, is starting a new and as-yet-unnamed venture with Barry Diller's IAC to create and distribute media across different platforms.

NBC's been struggling in the ratings since before Silverman took over, though the network always performs well when it comes to Emmy nominations. I imagine the jury will be out on his time at NBC until we see how NBC's new shows — including Trauma and Parenthood — perform this season. Meanwhile, what do you make of this news?

Image Source: WireImage
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PeachyKeen19 PeachyKeen19 7 years
Yes, that right about Nikki Finke! I heard she doesn't like him and I agree that he has done a lackluster job during his time at NBC. Bringing the Office and Ugly Betty to the US are great achievements, but his other shows for NBC have NOT been. This is major for NBC, who do you think will take over? Overall, Silverman leaving is for the best.
Phil Phil 7 years
Good riddance. He failed miserably in running NBC and the network will be better off without him. Too bad this had to happen after Katherine Pope was canned as a scapegoat, but I imagine Pope's better off away from NBC's decade of dysfunction. Nikki Finke must be pleased.
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