EXCLUSIVE: After recently restructuring Amazon Studios’ original content operations, TV chief Vernon Sanders is now setting up MGM scripted TV executive with new roles for Lindsay SloaneSenior EVP of MGM Scripted TV, and Rola Bauer, President of International TV for MGM. He outlined the reorganization in an internal memo, a copy of which was obtained by Deadline (you can read it in full below).
Sloane will become head of MGM US Scripted TV, while Bauer will expand his responsibilities as head of Pan-English Scripted SVOD TV, Development & Series. Sloane and Bauer will report to Sanders alongside his direct reports on the Amazon Studios side, Lauren Anderson, Laura Lancaster and Nick Pepper.
As part of the restructuring, MGM US Scripted TV will absorb Orion Television, the label relaunched two years ago. Orion TV EVP Bradley Gardner, who led the programming team, is stepping down and is in talks for a production deal at MGM TV.
Sanders’ memo does not mention Michael Wright, who most recently served as president of MGM Scripted Television and president of MGM+ (formerly Epix). As Deadline reported earlier this month, Wright, who helmed Epix before expanding his role in 2021 to oversee MGM’s scripted studio following Steve Stark’s exit, is expected to focus again on MGM+, which takes on a new role as part of Amazon TV’s larger portfolio. The studio part of his work has now been taken over by Sloane.
As the new head of MGM US Scripted TV, Sloane and his team will develop projects for Amazon Studios and continue to pitch projects to outside buyers.
In Bauer’s new role, she will oversee the development and production of English originals for Prime Video outside of the United States. It is a separate division of Amazon Studios’ Local Original Series & Movie content unit led by James Farrell.
The reorganization comes eight months after Amazon completed its acquisition of MGM and a day after Mark Burnett stepped down as chairman of MGM’s Worldwide Television Group. (He will continue to oversee his legacy series, including Survivor, Shark Tank and The voice.)
As Deadline reported earlier this month, employees of MGM’s television and film operations who have contracts have been offered one-year extensions as Amazon begins integrating the vaunted Hollywood studio into its entertainment division. This followed the first step in the workforce combination, which involved reviewing the management levels within Amazon Studios and MGM and aligning the structures of the two companies. I heard Gardner was one of those who didn’t get a contract.
Today is a big day for MGM TV as its latest scripted series, Wednesdayset a viewership record for Netflix.
Here is Sanders’ memo:
Further to my note of November 7e, I am thrilled to be able to announce two teams that will be an integral part of our US/Global TV Creative Development organization through which we will cultivate five specialized pipelines of original content. Following the conclusion of the MGM deal earlier this year, we are fortunate to welcome two well-established leaders into the fold to strengthen and grow our wide range of original television programming for our global customers.
Rola Bauer, former President of International TV for MGM, will expand her responsibilities as the new head of pan-English television, development and scripted SVOD series. In this new role, she will oversee the development and production of a new slate of English originals for Prime Video. Rola brings a wealth of experience on scripted series for international markets around the world and we are excited to have her provide original content, for our global customers, who travel to multiple countries. Basically, we all know that great content can come from anywhere, which is why we will continue to work with talent to produce more English-language shows outside of the United States. Rola’s new mission will be separate from the extensive local original series and film content being developed under James Farrell’s Division.
Lindsay Sloane, former Sr. EVP of MGM Scripted TV, will join our team to lead American scripted television for MGM. She was responsible for the development and sales of new projects on behalf of MGM and oversaw the development and production of the acclaimed series, The Handmaid’s Tale. Additionally, the team she oversees has developed and produced acclaimed series such as Fargo, Vikings: On Wax, and the recently released coming-of-age horror-comedy Wednesday, which is already topping the charts on Netflix. As the new head of MGM US Scripted TV, Lindsay and her team will develop projects for Amazon Studios and continue to bring projects to the external market.
As part of this reorganization, MGM US Scripted TV will absorb the scope and projects of Orion Television. We are in talks with Bradley Gardner to join us in a production deal at MGM TV. I would like to thank the Orion TV team for all their hard work and dedication over the past year.
By combining the rich history of the MGM brand with the work we have just begun at Amazon Studios, we will produce an abundance of the highest quality storytelling for our growing global audience. Lindsay and Rola will report to me with Lauren Anderson, Laura Lancasterand Nick Pepper to complement our world-class US/Global TV Operations team. We look forward to continuing to work with top designers and talent around the world to delight our ever-expanding customer base.
Please join me in welcoming Lindsay, Rola and their teams to our Amazon Studios TV family.
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