Fox has found its Charlie Collier replacement. Rob Wade, most recently Fox Entertainment’s president of alternative entertainment and specials, is becoming its new CEO, IndieWire has learned. Collier is heading to Roku.
Wade, the former “Dancing with the Stars” showrunner, will tack on some new responsibilities. In addition to the unscripted fare he’s overseen, he’ll now been in charge of animation house Bento Box Entertainment, TMZ, MarVista Entertainment, as well as Studio Ramsay Global. All of those entities were brought in under Collier.
Not only will Wade continue to have final say in alternative programming, he’ll also add scripted content creator Fox Entertainment Studios as well as Blockchain Creative Labs. Finally, Wade will spearhead Fox’s worldwide content sales unit, Fox Entertainment Global. Wade’s biggest success at Fox to-date is “The Masked Singer,” but don’t sleep on “Crime Scene Kitchen,” “Lego Masters,” and “Next Level Chef.”
“Since the formation of Fox Entertainment, Rob has been an integral part of the leadership team responsible for delivering on its long-term strategy of creating an independent media company built on broadcast, developing an owned content portfolio and maintaining a disciplined in-house infrastructure,” Lachlan Murdoch, executive chair and CEO of Fox Corporation said in a statement provided to IndieWire. “Given Rob’s sharp creative instincts and proven operational acumen, he is well-suited to lead Fox Entertainment in what promises to be an exciting next chapter in its rich history.”
“I am honored to be entrusted with leading Fox Entertainment into the future with an exceptionally talented team, whom I know very well, as we build and expand on Fox’s legacy of storytelling excellence, entrepreneurial energy and innovation,” Wade added. “It’s a transformative time across the global entertainment landscape, presenting limitless opportunity and, above all, creativity, making the outlook ahead bright and exhilarating.”
In addition to his “DWTS” tenure, Wade has served as the head of entertainment development at BBC Worldwide. He was also an executive producer on Fox’s “The X Factor” and NBC’s “America’s Got Talent,” and was head of TV at Simon Cowell’s Syco Entertainment North America. So you get the reason(s) he was in charge of reality.
Beginning at the end of October, Collier, will oversee Roku’s content and advertising product. From New York City, the Connecticut resident will report to the device-maker’s CEO and founder Anthony Wood. The Collier hire is Roku’s biggest splash to date in original programming, which on the content side includes “Weird: The Al Yankovic Story,” the Quibi play, and the “Zoey’s” Christmas movies. Originals are clearly a priority for Roku, which in November 2021 announced plans to develop more than 50 series over the the next two years.
Collier is often credited with transforming the former American Movie Classics from a station that literally played classic American movies to a player in prestige dramas. Though he didn’t technically greenlight “Mad Men,” he oversaw its iconic run at AMC. And Collier was part of the leadership team there that gave the go-ahead to “Breaking Bad,” which eventually birthed “Better Call Saul” (also during his tenure), as well as “The Walking Dead.”