9:09am PT by Lacey Rose
Viceland Hires Two TV Veterans in Top Positions
A network made by self-proclaimed TV outsiders is adding a few insiders.
Viceland announced on Friday that it has hired Adult Swim veteran Nick Weidenfeld as the channel's president of programming and longtime MTV exec Cristian Jofre as Viceland International’s creative director. The move signals both an eye toward continued expansion at Shane Smith’s two-month old network and a recognition that past experience is of value.
Weidenfeld is an Emmy-winning producer who has spent time at more traditional networks including Fox and FX. In his new role, he’ll oversee the development of new content and will help implement a vision across the slate of shows. To date, that creative vision of the network has largely been guided by Academy Award-winning filmmaker Spike Jonze, who is by all accounts a TV virgin.
For his part, Jofre spent more than 20 years as the senior vp marketing and the creative director at MTV Networks International, where he was responsible for the networks’ creative initiatives across multiple continents. At Viceland, he’ll be working across sales, programming and business development to oversee the channel’s look and feel as the network continues to expand internationally.
Both Weidenfeld and Jofre, longtime friends of the Vice brand, will work under Viceland co-presidents Jonze and Eddy Moretti as well as GM Guy Slattery. “[Nick’s] the kind of elastic, fantastic, feverishly funny creative mind Spike and I were looking for. It’s a signal where we’re heading with the channel,” Moretti said of Weidenfeld, adding of Jofre, “Since the international expansion of Viceland is literally going bizonkers, I told Spike we needed someone to be the connective tissue between us and the new channels. Immediately there was only one choice, Cristian: He’s by nature a nomadic, global creative citizen, with a sensitivity to the truths of local cultures. Viceland international expansion is not an imperialistic exercise! Cristian will include so many new voices and stories from around the world. He is also Chilean."
The network, backed by A+E, is still in its infancy and has benefited from not having to contend with publicized daily ratings. Still, Smith has been vocal about both the net's uniqueness and its prospects, granting a heavily unfiltered interview with The Hollywood Reporter in which he made a series of bold declarations and dropped 52 F-bombs.