Participant Media Taps Evan Shapiro to Oversee New TV Division

9:58 AM PST 04/16/2012 by Lesley Goldberg
Evan Shapiro

He'll be responsible to for the conception, development and production of socially relevant programming for the small screen.

The producers of feature films including Good Night, and Good Luck, and An Inconvenient Truth are getting into the television business.

Participant Media on Monday announced that it would enter the small-screen foray and tapped Evan Shapiro as president of its television unit, effective May 7.

In his new position, Shapiro will be charged with the conception, development and production of original programming that will follow the company's mandate of producing socially relevant entertainment, following such Academy Award -winning offerings as The Cove, and The Help, among others.

"Expanding Participant's brand of storytelling into television is both a natural progression and integral part of our expansion strategy," Participant Media CEO Jim Berk said in a statement announcing the news. "Evan's tremendous impact in transforming the IFC and Sundance networks combined with his genuine interest in socially relevant media, make him the perfect choice."

Prior to joining Participant, Shapiro was president of IFC TV and Sundance Channel and executive produced documentary efforts and series including This Film Is Not Yet Rated and Brick City, among others.

“For me, Participant's double bottom line mission and model have always stood out on the media landscape -- personally and professionally, I am driven by similar goals,” he said. "So I'm beyond excited to work with Jim and the Participant team and bring their approach and mission to a new, powerful medium."

E-mail: Lesley.Goldberg@thr.com; Twitter: @Snoodit

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