Reality pioneer exits CBS

Ghen Maynard moves into a producer role

Ghen Maynard is leaving CBS again.

Two years into his second tour of duty at the network, Maynard has stepped down as executive vp alternative programming and entertainment content for new media at CBS Paramount Network TV Entertainment Group where he oversaw reality programming for CBS, CW and CBS Par Network.

He is segueing into a producing deal that gives CBS and CW first-look at his development.

CBS is said to have been looking to make changes to its alternative department after a string of marginally performing series. The timing of the shift was picked to coincide with the beginning of the new development cycle as networks are starting to buy unscripted projects for next season.

Maynard will start his producing deal, which he called in a statement "the next adventure in my life," while helping CBS and CW's alternative departments with the transition until his successor is named.

"Ghen has talked with us about a desire to produce, and both of us thought the time was right to make a change in the alternative area, so this is an agreement that works for everyone," said Nancy Tellem, president of CBS Par Network TV Entertainment Group. "We have great admiration and appreciation for what Ghen has accomplished here (and) look forward to being part of the next chapter of his career.""

After making his mark in the reality TV genre in the U.S. as the executive who helped get "Survivor" on the air in 2000, thus opening the primetime gates to unscripted fare, Maynard became a rising star at CBS. During his first stint at the network as senior vp and head of alternative from 2002-2004, he put on the air such hits as the Emmy-winning "Amazing Race," summer fixture "Big Brother" and UPN's staple "America's Next Top Model."

Following a two-year stint on the scripted side as executive vp at NBC under Kevin Reilly, he returned to CBS in 2006 in an expanded role but hasn't been as successful in launching breakout unscripted hits.

His departure comes on the heels of another lackluster summer during which the network's new reality entries, including "Greatest American Dog," have failed to connect with viewers.
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