ABC Exec Steps Down ... Is She Headed to Obama-land?
Channing Dungey is stepping down as ABC’s President of Entertainment. Deadline reports that the announcement comes ahead of the completion of the 21st Century Fox acquisition by Disney and following the announcement of the Disney-ABC post-merger TV leadership, that includes Fox’s Dana Walden taking oversight of ABC, ABC Studios and Freeform as chairman, Disney Television Studios and ABC Entertainment. Sources say she was offered a new contract but opted to do something new, though it’s not clear what she plans to do next. There had been a lot of chatter about her possibly going to Netflix as an executive or work with Shonda Rhimes at the streaming giant or run Barack and Michelle Obama’s Netflix-based production company though none have been substantiated. The 49-year-old is a 14-year veteran of ABC. The shows that she helped bring to air include Shonda Rhimes’ Scandal and How to Get Away With Murder, both of which came to define an era for ABC. The 1991 UCLA graduate is the first Black executive to lead a broadcast network. She led the decision to cancel Roseanne earlier this year -- last season’s highest-rated TV show -- after Roseanne Barr’s racist comments on Twitter ignited a firestorm of criticism. Within an hour of her announcement, Disney went public with the news that Dungey would be succeeded by Karey Burke, head of programming for ABC’s sibling cabler Freeform. More here.