EXCLUSIVE: Todd Lieberman and David Hoberman’s Mandeville Films has brought in ABC Studios-based producer Laurie Zaks (Castle) as president of television. Zaks replaces Maria Crenna, who is leaving after a one-year stint. Mandeville, which has been at ABC Studios for more than a decade, has signed a new two-year deal with the studio where the company originally developed its USA hit Monk. Mandeville has a comedy pilot in serious contention at ABC, the John Leguizamo starrer King John. Crenna will remain an executive producer on the pilot but won’t be involved if it goes to series.
Zaks has been at ABC Studios since 2006 when she left the network executive ranks to become president of Armyan Bernstein’s Touchstone TV-based Beacon Television. At Beacon, Zaks developed ABC’s Castle, on which she serves as executive producer. Zaks, who is well liked at ABC Studios, signed an overall deal with the studio last year when she launched her own production company, Second Season. Zaks, who I hear was recommended to Mandeville by ABC Studios, will bring her development projects with her, continuing to develop TV projects through Mandeville. The deal was brokered by UTA.