Nexstar Media Group names new leadership for CW Network

Nexstar Media Group makes leadership change following completion of acquisition of CW Network.

The Irving, Texas-based owner of the broadcasting group announced Monday that it has closed the deal to acquire a majority stake in the CW and that Mark Pedowitz is stepping down as chairman. Nexstar is installing Dennis Miller, a former Sony Pictures Television executive whose background is in unscripted programming.

Nexstar agreed in August to acquire a 75% stake in CW from Warner Bros. Discovery and Paramount Global, who each still own 12.5%. The CW was formed in 2006 from the merger of two smaller networks – UPN, owned by Viacom, and WB, owned by Warner Bros.

Pedowitz, who ran the CW Network for 11 years, will be relaunching his independent company, Pinestreet Entertainment. Pedowitz previously managed the business affairs of Disney television studios.

While the CW network did not make a profit as a broadcast network, it served as an effective launch pad for programs that generated significant revenue for its studio owners, who were able to sell the series to streaming services and foreign broadcasters.

Pedowitz developed genre programming using familiar traits from the DC Comics universe to give the CW Network the youngest audience on network television and a distinctive brand identity. Many CW shows that drew small audiences on television became very popular on Netflix, where they were more likely to be discovered by younger viewers.

Pedowitz also increased the amount of original programming on the network, expanding it from five to seven nights a week. He also improved diversity on the CW by bringing more women and people of color into the cast and behind the camera.

“This burgeoning network, with its unique blend of programming, propelled The CW to the forefront of pop culture and social media,” Pedowitz said in a memo he sent to his staff Monday. “We developed water cooler TVs in a multi-platform world. We took what the audience wanted and gave it to them.”

Miller is a member of Nexstar’s board of directors. He was chairman of Industrial Media, a company specializing in unscripted programming that was sold to Sony Pictures Entertainment earlier this year. Industrial’s titles include 90 Day Fiance on TLC, American Idol on ABC, Matchmaker on Netflix and The Climb with Jason Mamoa on Apple TV+.

Nexstar is expected to move away from younger scripted programming towards broad-based tariffs that are more compatible with the local 10pm newscasts on its channels. Nexstar Media Group names new leadership for CW Network

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