Marta Fernandez, EVP of original programming at Starz, reportedly is stepping down less than six months after being promoted to the position. Fernandez has been with the Lionsgate-owned pay-TV channel since 2007.
Starz and a branded subscription streaming video service have been owned by Lionsgate since 2016 after the studio acquired the company for $4.4 billion. Media reports last week suggested CBS had offered Lionsgate $5 billion for Starz, which was declined.
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Starz CEO Chris Albrecht exited the company in February.
Fernandez’s contributions to Starz included spearheading various “Spartacus” – themed series, including “Blood and Sand,” “Gods of the Arena,” “Vengeance,” and “War of the Damned,” in addition to “Boss,” “Flesh and Bone,” “Ash vs Evil Dead,” “Da Vinci’s Demons” and “Black Sails,” among others.
Starz, the multi-channel distributor owned by Lionsgate, Dec. 17 announced the promotion of Marta Fernandez to EVP of original programming.
Based in Lionsgate’s Santa Monica office, Fernandez, who had been SVP of original programming, will expand her role within the originals team, while continuing to spearhead the network’s inclusion initiatives across the slate.
She will also continue to expand the drive toward female-forward programming, overseeing new development and current productions for the network including, original series “Vida” and “American Gods” as well as the upcoming series from playwright Katori Hall, “P-Valley.”
Fernandez, who joined Starz in 2007, has been a key contributor to the success of Starz Originals, beginning with the highly-rated “Spartacus” franchise (“Blood and Sand,” “Gods of the Arena,” “Vengeance,” and “War of the Damned”), and including series “Boss,” as well as “Flesh and Bone,” “Ash vs Evil Dead,” “Da Vinci’s Demons” and the Emmy-winning series “Black Sails.”
“Marta has done an excellent job of developing premium content and diverse talent and has been a great representative for Starz in our goal of serving underserved audiences,” Carmi Zlotnik, president of programming, said in a statement.“We are pleased to be able to acknowledge her dedication and continuing contribution to the network.”