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Women in Entertainment 2010 - Power 100 List

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    Dana Walden
    9
    Dana Walden
    Chairman, 20th Century Fox Television

    Walden loves a good laugh. “Every year, for our birthdays, we try and surprise each other in a humiliating way,” she jokes about fellow 20th Century Fox chairman Gary Newman. “Sometimes we’ll put a bogus meeting on each other’s schedules.” It’s amazing they have time for fun, given the primetime TV juggernaut Fox has become under their guidance in the past few years. This year, not one but two of its pilots — Modern Family and Glee, both of which Walden oversaw from inception to final cut — were up for the comedy series Emmy. Ultimately, Family took the top prize and the supporting actor in a comedy for Eric Stonestreet; Glee’s Ryan Murphy nabbed a directing award alongside Jane Lynch, who won for supporting actress in a comedy. Despite huge hits like these, Walden — a mother of two who has launched a slew of pop culture successes in her career, from Buffy the Vampire Slayer to Fox’s newest hit Raising Hope and is working on getting Steven Spielberg’s sci-fi drama Terra Nova off the ground — says her focus remains on fighting for those little-shows-that-could. “There aren’t as many opportunities to stick with it as there used to be,” she notes of supporting untested television talent. “But for us, it’s ‘Be creatively adventurous or go home.’ ”

     

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