March 21, 2014 12:00pm PT by Lesley Goldberg
Jason Sarlanis Tapped as VP Alternative at ABC (Exclusive)
ABC exec vp alternative Lisa Berger is fleshing out her team.
The executive, who replaced John Saade at the network in September, has tapped former E! executive Jason Sarlanis as vp alternative, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.
In his new post, Sarlanis will oversee all development activities and current primetime programming in the alternative department. He'll report to Berger, with whom he worked at E!, where she served as entertainment programming president.
"Jason has great taste and creative skills, and I can't wait for him to help shape alternative programming at ABC," Berger said.
Before joining ABC, Sarlanis was senior vp unscripted at Ryan Seacrest Productions, where he led the alternative development activities and worked with the creative community, attracting talent and forging relationships within the industry. He managed the company's biggest franchise, Keeping Up With the Kardashians, and developed new programming for Nickelodeon, FYI and E!
Before that, Sarlanis was vp original programming and series development at E! where he had creative oversight of The Soup and The Girls Next Door. During his tenure there, he expanded the Girls Next Door franchise, leading to the network's first spinoffs, Kendra and Holly's World. He also helped develop Kardashians and led to spinoffs including Kourtney & Khloe Take Miami as well as Khloe & Lamar.
Sarlanis' hire comes as ABC is poised to launch its adaptation of hot Israeli singing competition series Rising Star in the summer. ABC has seen its unscripted fortunes fade, with veteran Dancing With the Stars showing its age.