Wu, O'Neill recast at NBC Uni


Veteran NBC casting executive Grace Wu has been named head of casting at sister studio Universal Media Studios. She replaces Nancy Perkins, who has left to co-produce a documentary.

Meanwhile, another veteran NBC Uni casting exec, UMS vp casting Steven O'Neill, has been upped to senior vp casting at the network, taking over the position vacated by Wu.

Wu will serve as senior vp casting at UMS, overseeing all of the casting for the studio's scripted programs for networks and cable and reporting to UMS president Katherine Pope. Working under Wu will be Teri Fiddleman, who was appointed director of casting.

"Grace is one of the best executives I've ever worked with," Pope said. "Her passion, eye for talent and tenacity have always set her apart, and we are incredibly lucky to have her here at the studio."

Wu most recently was senior vp casting at NBC Entertainment, reporting to executive vp casting Marc Hirschfeld. She was responsible for supervising the day-to-day casting on current NBC series and projects in development and oversaw casting for the series "Bionic Woman," "Life," "Psych" and the upcoming "Lipstick Jungle" as well as the USA Network/UMS mini "The Starter Wife."

Wu, who started her TV casting career under Hirschfeld in Liberman/Hirschfeld Casting, joined NBC in 1999 as manager. She did a two-year stint at UMS (then NBC Uni TV Studio) as vp casting from 2004-06.

Perkins is leaving the TV casting executive ranks after 14 years — 10 years at Universal TV, where she rose to senior vp casting, and four as head of casting at NBC Uni TV/UMS following the NBC-Universal merger.

"Fourteen years is a long time, and I'm so lucky and proud to have worked on all the shows I did, including all the 'Law & Order' series and the original casts of 'House,' 'The Office,' 'Friday Night Lights' and 'Heroes,' " Perkins said. "There have always been other things I wanted to do, and this seemed like the time."

Perkins is working with filmmaker Alice Elliott on a documentary about New York's Manhattan Plaza, an apartment complex that provides subsidized housing for people in the performing arts, where she was a tenant.

As senior vp casting at NBC, O'Neill will report to Hirschfeld.

"Steven's keen eye for talent, first as my New York-based vp of casting and more recently based at Universal Media Studios on the West Coast, has been an enormous asset for NBC Universal," Hirschfeld said.

Before moving to the West Coast in 2006 to work as vp casting at UMS, O'Neill was vp casting in New York for nine years, overseeing network, studio and cable channel casting on the East Coast.

O'Neill joined NBC in 1993 as a manager of casting.