Apple Enlists Jason Katims' Producing Partner Michelle Lee

Michelle Lee - Publicity - P 2017
Courtesy of Apple

Lee, who oversaw Katims' Universal Television-based production company, will serve as a creative executive.

Apple continues to round out its creative team.

The tech giant has enlisted Michelle Lee, the producing partner of Parenthood showrunner Jason Katims. Lee will start her new role as senior creative executive Jan. 1. She will report to Matt Cherniss, head of domestic creative development.

Lee has worked with Katims at his Universal Television-True Jack Productions banner since 2012. She has developed and exec produced NBC's upcoming buzzy high school theater drama Rise and Hulu's The Path and led Katims into comedy with NBC's late and great About a Boy. Before True Jack, Lee spent two years as vp television at Alex Kurtzman's and Roberto Orci's company (before the duo split), working on series including Sleepy Hollow. She started her career at the Mark Gordon Co. (Grey's Anatomy) after graduating from the Peter Stark Producing Program at USC's School of Cinema and Television.

Sources say Lee wasn't looking to leave True Jack, but Apple aggressively pursued the well-respected executive. Apple has been rapidly ramping up its creative executive staff as it pushes into scripted originals under former Sony Pictures Television Studios execs Zack Van Amburg and Jamie Erlicht. The duo has recruited an impressive staff, including fellow creative execs Ali Woodruff and Max Aronson, head of international Morgan Wandell and head of current Kim Rozenfeld. Cherniss joined Apple in August.

Apple more recently greenlighted its first two scripted series — an Amazing Stories anthology from Bryan Fuller and a morning show drama starring Jennifer Aniston and Reese Witherspoon.