9:09am PT by Rick Porter
Former NBCU, IFC Executive Evan Shapiro Named President of National Lampoon
Iconic comedy brand National Lampoon has hired Evan Shapiro as its president as it attempts to re-establish its name in the digital era.
The former IFC, Participant Media and NBCUniversal executive, who launched the latter's Seeso comedy streaming service, will oversee development, acquisitions and production on TV, digital and audio content for the company. National Lampoon has also acquired Shapiro's eshapTV and will continue developing a number of projects the company has in the works.
"I've been fortunate to work with enormously talented and influential comedy minds," said Shapiro. "But the chance to take up the mantel of The National Lampoon and use it as a megaphone for the next wave of young and diverse comedic talent is the opportunity of a lifetime. Now, if they just show me where the bathroom is, I'll be all set."
Among the projects National Lampoon has in the works is a relaunch of The National Lampoon Radio Hour as a podcast with the Forever Dog network; an anthology series based on some of the more than 4,000 short stories that ran in National Lampoon magazine; and a reboot of musical comedy show Lemmings, which helped launch the careers of John Belushi, Chevy Chase and Christopher Guest, both onstage and on TV.
National Lampoon and Forever Dog are also developing a number of the latter's podcasts as TV series and working together on a scripted podcast for Amazon's Audible.
Shapiro's eshapTV was working on four shows in conjunction with Margaret Cho's Animal Family that will come under the National Lampoon banner. They include Almost Asian from Katie Malia, which has been in development at IFC, and Cracking the Girl Code, based on the lives of Andy Gonzales and Sophie Hauser, who met at a Girls Who Code camp and created the viral video game Tampon Run.
"We've been precious with the label since we acquired it," said National Lampoon's Raj B. Sing. "Evan rounds out the leadership we deemed necessary to make the greatest impact, considering how important talent incubation is to us. Pair that with the explosion of media formats, and you have the ingredients for telling stories for everyone: blurring convention and genre, with broad and niche appeal. What's not to like?"