Don Francisco, the host of Univision’s long-running variety show Sabado Gigante, will join rival Telemundo as a senior news correspondent in a deal that includes the creation of a production company.
Variety reports Francisco, whose real name is Mario Kreutzberger, brings a huge reputation to Telemundo, including his iconic role at Sabado Gigante, which ended its run last September after 53 years–including three decades on Univision.
“Mario has such a unique understanding of the Spanish-language audience both here in the U.S. and abroad,” Conde said. “He knows how to adapt and create innovative content that connects with Spanish speakers around the world; that’s why we’re so excited to be working with him.”
At Univision’s upfront presentation last May, Kreutzberger was given a standing ovation for his contribution to the network.
“For over 53 years, I have had the privilege and the honor of doing what I love: commenting with and entertaining people,” said Kreutzberger. “I hope to work with you again in the future. Who knows? Todo es posible [Anything is possible].”
During that same week, we asked Telemundo president Luis Silberwasser if he was interested in bringing Don Francisco on board: “He still works for the other guy… I usually don’t like to talk to talent that’s working for somebody else,” Silberwasser said at the time.