EXCLUSIVE: Two of FremantleMedia North America’s top executives are leaving the company. President of brand partnerships and franchise management David Luner is departing at the end of the month to join Lionsgate as EVP Worldwide TV Marketing in January. Also departing FMNA is COO Lee Rierson, who opted not to renew his contract. He will continue to consult on FMNA projects.
In the newly created top TV marketing position at Lionsgate, Luner will report to Kevin Beggs, Chairman of the Lionsgate Television Group; Sandra Stern, COO of Lionsgate Television; and Jim Packer, President of Worldwide Television & Digital Distribution. Luner’s recruitment is indicative of the ongoing expansion of Lionsgate’s TV operations as the company’s portfolio has grown to 30 series on 20 networks and digital platforms including Orange Is the New Black, Mad Men, Nashville, Manhattan, Chasing Life, Deadbeat and The Royals.
A FremantleMedia veteran, Luner was upped to FMNA branding president in February after helping raise the profile of shows like American Idol and The X Factor. He was previously EVP Brand Partnerships and Franchise Management during the integration of FremantleMedia Enteprises, the company’s former ancillary rights group, into the FMNA corporate structure. He also served as EVP Digital and Licensing for FME.
Rierson joined FMNA as COO last year from Shine America, where he also served as COO. Both he and Luner reported to Thom Beers, CEO, FremantleMedia North America.