Christina Davis to Lead Starz Original Programming

Christina Davis -Publicity - H 2020

Starz has named Christina Davis to lead its original programming team.

Davis, a producer and former CBS executive, will be president of original programming at the premium cable outlet. She fills the post formerly held by Carmi Zlotnik, who departed in January after a decade and signed an exclusive producing deal at Apple soon after that.

Under CEO Jeffrey Hirsch, to whom Davis will report, Starz has made its mission to create premium programming for women and diverse audiences.

"Christina has established an impressive track record in developing successful, quality drama series and building lasting, fruitful relationships within the creative community which I believe will allow us to fully execute on the creative vision we have set for Starz,” said Hirsch. “She is a welcome addition to the leadership team and we look forward to bringing her talent and experience to bear in producing best-in-class, premium content that will resonate with audiences and continue to elevate the platform around the world."

Davis was executive vp drama series development at CBS from 2009 to 2017 after rising through the ranks at the broadcaster. Her tenure there included overseeing the NCIS franchise, The Good Wife, Blue Bloods, Hawaii Five-0, Elementary and Madam Secretary, among other shows. 

After departing CBS, she formed Maniac Productions with writer and producer Michael Seitzman. The company was based at ABC Studios.

"I am so excited to be joining the incredible team at Starz. This is a company I greatly admire for its critically acclaimed series, as well as the way Jeff has led the growth of its global audience, through both traditional linear television and the rapid expansion of the Starz App," said Davis. "I'm grateful for the opportunity to help guide such an extraordinary network into a thrilling new period of growth and look forward to working with the best creators in television to tell bold, captivating stories that audiences will be truly passionate about."

Davis inherits a roster of original series at Starz that includes several Power spinoffs, Outlander, American Gods, Hightown, P-Valley, Black Mafia Family from Curtis "50 Cent" Jackson, The Girlfriend Experience, pro wrestling drama Heels, comedy Run the World, an adaptation of Dangerous Liaisons, Becoming Elizabeth and Shining Vale. Hirsch, who became CEO last year after Chris Albrecht's exit, wants to make Starz a destination for "premium female" programming, which focuses on women 24-54 who, he says, enjoy great women in history. Read more of the executive's plans for the network in THR's interview with him here.