Brian Graden is one of the most successful executives in the history of television. Graden grew up in Illinois and graduated from Hillsboro High School in 1981. He graduated from Oral Roberts University in 1985 with a degree in business, and later graduated with an MBA from Harvard University. Brian’s most recent venture (2013-) is his production company BG Media, founded with partners Gaurav Misra and Lois Curren.
Prior to founding BG Media, Brian Graden served as President of Entertainment, MTV Networks Music Channels for an unprecedented 13 years. As President of Entertainment, Mr. Graden lead and provided programming oversight to all the MTVN music networks including MTV, VH1, MTV2 and CMT. While there, he developed such cultural phenomenon as The Osbournes, Total Request Live, Punk’d, Jackass. He also greenlit MTV’s biggest hits of recent years, Jersey Shore and 16 and Pregnant. MTV remained the #1 destination for viewers ages 12-24 throughout Brian’s entire tenure. He similarly engineered a ratings turnaround at Vh1 with programs like I LOVE THE 80’s and Best Week Ever.
While at MTV, Brian Graden was also named the first president of the groundbreaking network, Logo, the first network dedicated to serving the LGBT audience. At the helm of Logo, Brian was responsible for all aspects of the channel.
Before joining MTV Networks, Mr. Graden tapped into the phenomenon that became “South Park,” as he commissioned Matt Stone and Trey Parker to create an animated short called “The Spirit of Christmas,” which he then sent out as a video Christmas card. The five-minute short quickly became the underground secret vice of Hollywood and was honored with the LA Film Critics’ Award for Best Animation.
Earlier in his career, Mr. Graden ran Foxlab, Fox’s home for new and experimental projects, where he oversaw an array of programming initiatives. Mr. Graden also owned his own company, which produced several shows including the “Dating Game” for national syndication.
Trivia: Mr. Graden holds an MBA from Harvard Business School
Mr. Graden is currently writing a book about cultural phenomenon, and staging the musical LIMBO, which he wrote with friends.
Current BG Media shows include: HitRecord on TV in partnership with Joseph Gordon Levitt.
BG Media website: www.briangradenmedia.com
- Oxfield, Jesse, Idov, Michael (March 4, 2007), ‘Out’ Ranks the Top 50 Gays; Anderson Is No. 2, New York Magazine. Retrieved June 28, 2007.
- "Brian Graden: President of entertainment, MTV Networks Music Channels". Tvweek.com. Retrieved 2013-11-01.
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