10:00am PT by Lesley Goldberg
Skydance's Carol Turner Joins ABC Studios as Head of Production
There's a change at the top of ABC Studios' production unit.
Longtime head of production Gary French is retiring from the post, with Skydance TV's Carol Turner taking over the role as executive vp production and postproduction. She will report to ABC Studios president Jonnie Davis and have oversight of more than 25 series and pilots. That role will be instrumental as TV production remains at a standstill after being shut down amid the novel coronavirus pandemic. There are currently more questions than answers about how — and when — production can resume.
“This position is so crucial to the operation of a studio, now more than ever,” Davis said Monday in a statement. “Carol is one of the most respected and impressive production heads in our business. She brings a wealth of knowledge and experience with her, and will help us navigate the new reality of what production will look like moving forward. Gary French set a high bar for our studio and we’re fortunate to have Carol here to carry on that legacy.”
Turner joins ABC Studios from Skydance TV, where she held the same position since 2018. At the indie studio, she oversaw production for a number of series including Grace and Frankie, Altered Carbon, Foundation and Jack Ryan. Before that, Turner was the first director of production for international originals at Netflix, where she oversaw such shows as Dark, Kingdom, Sacred Games and 3%. Prior to that, she was vp production for scripted and unscripted series at BBC Worldwide.
“I am honored and excited to join Jonnie and the incredible team he is building at ABC Studios,” said Turner. “It’s a momentous time in our industry, and I’m very much looking forward to the innovative and creative ways we’ll find to produce great television together. I am very grateful to the team at Skydance and proud of all of the work we did together.”
For his part, French had run production at ABC Studios since 2008, when he was elevated to the role after Barry Jossen departed.
Turner is Davis' latest hire since he moved over from 20th TV to oversee the studio last summer. Since then he has expanded Tracy Underwood's purview to include the studio.