Ryan Seacrest Productions Adds Execs From E!, NBCUniversal (Exclusive)
Ryan Seacrest Productions continues to bolster its ranks.
The company has recruited former E! original programming exec Jason Sarlanis as senior vp development for the company’s unscripted team, as well as Vanessa Grunstein as vp business and legal affairs. Both execs will begin this month.
The hires come as Los Angeles-based RSP continues to bulk up its programming efforts, which include the Keeping Up with the Kardashians franchise, Married to Jonas and The Wanted Life for E! as well as dating series Dream Date for Fox, Shahs of Sunset for Bravo, Montecito for A&E and Superstar Showdown for both NBC and Telemundo, among others. Come spring, the Ryan Seacrest-fronted company will launch its first scripted series, Mixology, for ABC, with a few other projects in development.
In his prior role at E!, Sarlanis was part of the team that launched such franchises as Keeping Up with the Kardashians, Fashion Police and Ice Loves CoCo. He worked directly with RSP execs on recent efforts Married to Jonas and The Wanted Life, and will report to RSP's head of unscripted programming Heather Schuster.
For her part, Grunstein will become RSP's first in-house legal exec and will manage the negotiations for development and production deals with producers, talent and networks, as well as licensing and distribution agreements. She’ll also provide legal counsel for digital, marketing and other business operations. (RSP's outside legal counsel will remain Hansen, Jacobson.) In her new role, Grunstein will report to RSP CFO Jeff Refold.
Grunstein's legal career began in her native Sydney, Australia, working in licensing at Petrol Records and then as an attorney for a leading local practice. She later transitioned into a business and legal affairs counsel role for MTV/Nickelodeon Networks in the Australia/New Zealand region before relocating to Los Angeles in 2010 to serve as director of business affairs at NBCUniversal.