The Hollywood Reporter Unveils 2013 Reality Heat List
This story first appeared in the April 12 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine.
Long before setting an A&E ratings record with the season premiere of Duck Dynasty, the Robertson family actually was featured on multiple, though little-watched, series on The Outdoor Channel. So the clan's current dominance -- the show averages 8.3 million viewers, half of them in the advertiser-coveted 18-to-49 demographic -- is a testament to Dubuc, A+E Television Networks' president of entertainment and media, and her team (notably executive vp David McKillop), who applied creative marketing and clever story development to turn Dynasty into a juggernaut. Dubuc's portfolio features most of the top 10 reality shows on TV, including Dynasty, History's Pawn Stars (4.8 million viewers), A&E's Storage Wars and History's Swamp People and American Pickers (all average 4.3 million viewers).
Meanwhile, over at Discovery (the buff big brother to sassy little sibling TLC, home of cultural lightning rods Here Comes Honey Boo Boo and Breaking Amish), group president O'Neill and her team -- including executive vps of development and programming Nancy Daniels and Dolores Gavin -- have built a male-dominated destination with five of the top 10 unscripted shows in all of cable among men 25 to 54: Gold Rush, Moonshiners, Amish Mafia, Bering Sea Gold and Fast N' Loud. "Whether cheering scientists finding a giant squid, chuckling at a new Honey Boo Boo expression or watching the Amish on either network," says O'Neill, "I have the best job and team in the business."