After meeting with various TV producers and development executives, Paramount chairman and CEO Brad Grey looked internally for an exec to lead the film studio’s recently re-launched TV division. Amy Powell will add the position of President of Paramount Television to her current responsibilities as head of Digital Entertainment and Insurge Pictures.
This marks the first appointment to the start-up television division, unveiled in March, which is designed to finance and develop television for all platforms, from digital episodic content to primetime series. Its first project was financing/co-producing duties on the CBS/Sony TV pilot Beverly Hills Cop, an offshoot from the Paramount movie franchise. The plan for the next five years is to build Paramount TV into a creative TV studio that will mine existing Paramount properties as well as new ideas from established and emerging talent, broadly seeking partners and distribution. Paramount TV was one of the leading brands for TV production until 2005 when the studio was renamed to CBS TV Studios as it remained with CBS in the company split with Viacom. “Amy has proven herself to be a highly-talented, innovative and creative executive,” said Grey. “Her skill and experience working across all platforms, at engaging audiences, and, most recently her work at Insurge, will be instrumental as we build a versatile television operation.” Powell will report to Grey on her television duties. She remains President of Paramount’s micro-budget Insurge Pictures, reporting to Adam Goodman, and she’ll continue to work closely with Vice Chairman Rob Moore on digital and business affair matters across all her responsibilities.
For the past two years, Powell has led Paramount’s digital arm that brings original serialized content. The label has released Ben Stiller’s Burning Love, which was nominated for an Emmy Award this past week. Burning Love premiered on Yahoo! and all three seasons will make the jump to E! Entertainment Television. Currently the label is in pre-production on the Bandito Brothers produced action-thriller series, Chop Shop, which will give a window into the underground world of Los Angeles car culture and premiere on Machinima. Following the success of the first Paranormal Activity film – for which Powell played a key role in the film’s success through her digital marketing and “demand-it” distribution campaign – Paramount created Insurge, its micro-budget feature division with Powell as President. Under her leadership, Insurge has released the top-grossing musical documentary Justin Bieber: Never Say Never, the horror hit, The Devil Inside, and the biopic, Katy Perry: Part of Me. Powell joined Paramount in 2004 from an interactive marketing position at Sony Pictures. In 2006, she was promoted to SVP of Interactive Marketing and went on to run Insurge in 2010. She has created, developed and executed digital marketing campaigns for films including the Paranormal Activity franchise, Star Trek, Iron Man, Cloverfield, Jackass, Transformers, Tropic Thunder and Team America. Powell began her career in television at CNN.