ABC Fires Top Scripted Development Executive

Suzanne Patmore-Gibbs

The position held by Suzanne Patmore-Gibbs, pictured, is eliminated; heads of drama, Channing Dungey, and comedy, Samie Falvey, will report to Paul Lee directly.

ABC entertainment chief Paul Lee continues to flatten the executive structure at the division he inherited last summer.

Suzanne Patmore-Gibbs, who has been ABC’s executive vp of scripted creative since 2007, is leaving the network. Lee has eliminated the position altogether in an effort to have a more hands-on role in development.

Going forward, Channing Dungey and Samie Falvey, ABC’s senior vps drama and comedy, respectively, will report directly to Lee.

The move comes as ABC has struggled to launch scripted series this season as veteran shows have begun to decline.

Season to date, ABC is down 4 percent in total viewers, and 10 percent among the advertiser-beloved 18 to 49 demographic, compared to the same period last year.

Longer-running series like Grey's Anatomy, Desperate Housewives and Brothers & Sisters are showing their age, while newcomers The Whole Truth, My Generation and No Ordinary Family have failed to take off. (The first two were quickly canceled; the latter is limping along.)