20th TV's Howard Kurtzman, Mark Pearson Elevated
20th Century Fox TV is elevating two of its top business execs.
The studio behind hits Modern Family, Homeland and The Simpsons has promoted Howard Kurtzman and Mark Pearson to new and expanded roles. Kurtzman will serve as president of business operations, while Pearson has been upped to executive vp brand management and digital media.
Kurtzman, known as the chief architect of the studio's talent deals, license agreements and business contracts, will expand his involvement with the studio's cable offshoots, Fox 21 and Fox Television Studios. A 17-year 20th TV veteran, he will continue to oversee the company's extensive business and legal affairs operations as well.
"Howard has been right by our side every step of the way as we've grown this studio, and he deserves a considerable amount of credit for its success," said 20th TV chairmen Dana Walden and Gary Newman in a joint statement Wednesday. "Our business is evolving at breakneck speed, and Howard has kept us ahead of the curve at every turn, anticipating new models and adapting our agreements in innovative ways that have kept us both competitive and compelling to talent behind and in front of the camera."
For his part, Pearson will continue to lead the exploitation of the studio's brands across all distribution channels, with specific emphasis on digital and new media, overseeing the company's brand management, strategy, marketing, research and music operations. As part of his role, he helps guide the studio's strategy with regard to home entertainment, DVD and SVOD.
"Mark's guidance of the studio's brand management and strategy has been invaluable, and he has taken on increased responsibility as we mine new platforms for revenue opportunities, while always protecting the integrity of our shows," added Newman and Walden. "His work on the digital front has kept the studio on the cutting edge of leveraging new and exciting ways to expose and exploit our content. This expanded role both acknowledges his significant contributions over the past several years and challenges him to lend his considerable talents and insights to greater aspects of our business."
Kurtzman came to the studio by way of New World Entertainment, which was acquired by News Corp. in 1997. Before that, Kurtzman spent 12 years at Stephen J. Cannell Productions, where he rose to the role of senior vp business and legal affairs, and MCA. Pearson joined in 2005, after serving as vp franchise strategy at Universal Pictures. Prior to that, the Wharton MBA was a music industry exec, working with artists including 3rd Bass and Nas.