EXCLUSIVE: Brillstein Entertainment Partners has named former Regency TV president Robin Schwartz as president of its television division. She will replace JoAnn Alfano, who is departing after serving as TV head for the past two years. Alfano will continue to executive produce the new Brillstein/Plan B drama series for ABC, Resurrection.
Brillstein’s TV unit has signed a new two-year overall deal with ABC Studios where it has been based for the past decade. The new pact has a first-look component. “We are grateful for the continued support of our friends at ABC Studios and excited about our new first-look arrangement,” Brillstein Entertainment CEO Jon Liebman said. “Robin Schwartz is a terrific executive and her broad experience and talent relationships make her an excellent choice to lead and build our television group. We are happy for JoAnn, who is a great friend, and we are looking forward to working with her in the next chapter of her career.”
Schwartz has a background as a network and studio executive and a writer. She started off as VP Primetime Series and Children’s Programming for NBC and also served as VP Programming at ABC Family, where she played a key role in the rebranding of the cable channel following its purchase by Disney. Schwartz was named president of Regency TV in 2004 and ran the studio until it closed in 2007. She went on to become the first president of OWN: The Oprah Winfrey Network, which she departed in one of a series of executive shake-ups during the network’s uncertain early years. At OWN, she established the structure for the start-up cable network.
Most recently, Schwartz has been serving on the advisory board of a large digital media company and is on the board of directors of the Hollywood Radio & Television Society. “Brillstein has long been one of the standard bearers in our industry and I am thrilled to be working with them, as well as ABC Studios,” she said. “I am very excited about the opportunity to create entertaining and memorable television alongside such creative and talented people.”