Fusion chief programming officer Wade Beckett emailed his staff this morning with an update on the network’s on-going changes.
Robin Radzinski Wong has been named VP of Current Production, where she will oversee all Fusion in-house original programming. Radzinski Wong’s past stops include Oxygen, Style, MTV, VH1, HBO, G4 and a lengthy run at E!’s “Howard Stern” show.
Fusion has also hired Bryan Carmel as VP of Development. He will be based in Los Angeles and focus on bringing new projects to the network. Carmel has previously written and produced television series for MTV, Nickelodeon, ABC Family, VH1, Bravo, Spike, and ESPN.
George Lansbury will now help Beckett manage all third-party productions. Beckett also mentions that many new projects will be announced “in the days and weeks ahead.”
The entire email that Beckett sent to his staff is below:
Hi all —
Over the past year, we’ve had the opportunity to experiment and learn about what our audience likes and wants from us. Part of that process has been finding our own voice and throwing out the traditional playbook. We still have a lot of work to do, but our programming is evolving and reflects many of the lessons we’ve learned.
We are focused on delivering shows to our audience that inform, provoke conversations, and are entertaining – proving you don’t have to be boring to be smart.
We are also looking to achieve new levels of digital and television integration. Fusion is lucky to have an amazing set of voices that have cultivated engaged audiences on the web and we will increasingly be bringing their work to our audience, including with the launch of the Real Future series from Alexis Madrigal and the Silicon Valley team later this year.
An important part of building a strong programming strategy that will allow Fusion to continue to thrive and grow is continuing to strengthen our team.
I am pleased to formally announce that veteran television producer Robin Radzinski Wong has joined us as Vice President of Current Production. In this role she will oversee all Fusion in-house daily & weekly Originals including “AMERICA with Jorge Ramos,” “Soccer Gods,” “The Dan Le Batard Show” simulcast with ESPN, and Alicia Menendez’s new primetime show “Come Here & Say That” while working closely with Mara Farina on coordinating all our in-house production needs.
Robin has a wealth of experience developing and producing series, specials and live broadcasts for a range of networks including Oxygen, Style, MTV, VH1, HBO, and G4. Most recently, she has been working in the docu-reality genre at Endemol USA, a leading creator and distributor of multi-platform programming.
For more than a decade Robin headed up E!’s “Howard Stern,” a nightly half-hour program featuring celebrity interviews and comedy from Stern’s live daily radio show, helping to make it one of the highest-rated shows in E!’s history.
I am thrilled to have Robin bringing her vast expertise to Fusion as we continue to grow and evolve our programming slate. She is based here at Newsport so please give her a warm welcome.
I am also excited to share the news that Bryan Carmel is joining Fusion as our Vice President of Development. He comes to us from True Entertainment where he most recently served as the Executive Producer on “Oprah’s Favorite Things” on OWN.
Bryan’s love of documentary and comedy is a perfect mix for our young, diverse millennial audience. Bryan produced the 2011 SXSW Audience Award-winning documentary Kumare, which was released theatrically nationwide in 2012. He has also written and executive produced two documentary specials for History: “The Stoned Ages,” an exploration of our relationship with drugs hosted by Breaking Bad’s Dean Norris and “I-Swear,” a history of profanity hosted by comedian Adam Ferrara. Bryan has written and produced television series for MTV, Nickelodeon, ABC Family, VH1, Bravo, Spike, and ESPN.
Bryan will continue to be based in Los Angeles where he will work with Alex Fumero and Miguel Tamayo on bringing exciting new projects to Fusion.
With Robin focusing on Fusion Originals and Bryan working to bring new shows to Fusion, I have asked George Lansbury to help me with the critical task of managing all our third party productions — the shows and documentaries we work on with outside production companies — such as “Drug Wars” (Paraiso Pictures), “No, You Shut Up” (Henson), and “The Chris Gethard Show” (Funny or Die).
George will be the Fusion point person on these projects, liaising with the production companies to ensure each project lives up to its full potential. His proven track record of finding creative ways to tackle complicated problems will be invaluable in this role.
Because of the strength of our incredible programming team and their hard work so far, we have some very exciting projects coming down the pipeline—ranging from dynamic new original series that will introduce our viewers to people, places, and perspectives they won’t find anywhere else to engaging documentaries that will inform and provoke. We will be announcing many of these projects in the days and weeks ahead.
Finally, as many of you know our time with the amazing Lydia Antonini, who has been consulting with us on our development strategy, has come to an end as she prepares to take on new personal and professional adventures. She has helped bring exciting projects our way including “The Chris Gethard Show,” and a number of other projects that are now in the works. We owe her a great deal and hope to have her work with us again down the line.
Have a great week!