CBS Taps Drama Head Julie McNamara to Head All Access

Bryan Seabury is expected to be promoted to replace McNamara as head of drama for CBS Television Studios.
Courtesy of CBS

CBS is turning to its studio counterpart's head of drama to oversee its digital platform, All Access.

Julie McNamara has been tapped to serve as exec vp original content at CBS All Access, the network's digital subscription video-on-demand and live streaming service. Sources tell THR that CBS senior vp drama development Bryan Seabury is expected to be promoted to fill McNamara's slot at the studio.

In the newly created position, McNamara — who had led drama development at CBS Television Studios for the past 10 years — will oversee all current and future original series for CBS All Access. She will report to CBS Television studios president David Stapf and CBS Digital Media/CBS Interactive exec vp and GM Marc DeBevoise.

"Julie has been one of the industry’s preeminent drama development executives for more than a decade," Stapf said. "Her taste, business savvy and deep relationships with the creative community will serve her and CBS All Access well as we move forward with more marquee premium content for subscribers. As a studio, we're very excited to expand into this space, and even more excited to do so with a dedicated executive of Julie's caliber."

McNamara's promotion comes as CBS All Access has made a strong push for original content, starting with the highly anticipated Star Trek reboot from showrunner Bryan Fuller as well as a spinoff of The Good Wife from Robert and Michelle King. The VOD service is expected to add three or four new series next year, joining Trek — which bows in January on CBS before moving to All Access — and The Good Wife off-shoot, due in the spring.

For McNamara's part, the well-liked executive most recently was exec vp drama development at CBS TV Studios, where she oversaw development for all primetime drama series for broadcast television. In that role, McNamara shepherded CBS' The Good Wife, Elementary, Scorpion, Hawaii Five-0, Blue Bloods, Madam Secretary, Under the Dome, NCIS: Los Angeles and The CW's Jane the Virgin, among others. Before that, she was vp drama at ABC, where she developed Alias, Desperate Housewives and Grey's Anatomy.

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