Josh Sapan

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Josh Sapan[1]
BornNovember 28, 1951[1]
Alma materUniversity of Wisconsin-Madison[2]
OccupationPresident and Chief Executive Officer of AMC Networks [3]

Josh Sapan (born 1951) is an American entertainment executive. Sapan is the CEO of AMC Networks, a position he has held since 1995.

Early life and education[edit]

Sapan was born to a Jewish family[4][5] in Queens, New York.[6] His father worked in advertising, and his mother was an Off Off Broadway actress.[7] Sapan was raised in Brooklyn, attended P.S. 187[8], and attended the University of Wisconsin-Madison, earning a degree in communication arts in 1975.[9]


Sapan began his career in cable television at Tele-PrompTer Manhattan Cable TV, which later became Time Warner Cable.[10]

He later joined the premium pay-TV service Showtime, where he led marketing, creative services and on-air programming promotion.

In 1987, Sapan joined the National Entertainment Division of Rainbow Media, a programming subsidiary of Cablevision Systems Corporation, as president of AMC and Bravo, where he spearheaded the development of the Bravo network.

He was named CEO of Rainbow Media in 1995.[11]

In 2002, Sapan was instrumental in the sale of Bravo to NBC for $1.25 billion in stock and cash.[12]

In 2005, Sapan opened New York City’s IFC Center, the brick-and-mortar home for the brand and home to DOC NYC, the largest documentary film festival in the United States.[13]

In 2008, Sapan led the company’s acquisition of Sundance Channel from General Electric Company’s NBC Universal, CBS Corporation’s Showtime Networks, and entities controlled by Robert Redford.[14] In June 2011, Sapan led the company’s spin-off from Cablevision Systems Corporation, and AMC Networks began trading as a separate public company on the NASDAQ stock exchange.[15]

Sapan expanded AMC Networks' footprint through the February 2014 acquisition of Liberty Global's international channels portfolio that led to AMC Networks being available in more than 140 countries[16] as of 2017.


Sapan is the author of The Big Picture: America in Panorama (Princeton Architectural Press), a collection of panoramic photos from the 20th century.[17]

He is also a published poet. [18]


Sapan serves on numerous boards, including The Paley Center for Media, The Cable Center, the Cable & Telecommunications Association for Marketing (CTAM) Educational Foundation, the International Radio and Television Society (IRTS), the Museum of the Moving Image, People for the American Way, WNYC Radio, and The New School.[citation needed]


  • Cable Hall of Fame, 2013
  • Broadcasting & Cable Hall of Fame, 2008
  • National Cable & Telecommunications Association Vanguard Award for Programmers, 2010
  • National Cable & Telecommunications Association Vanguard Award for Distinguished Leadership, 2015
  • CTAM's Grand TAM Award and Chairman's Award, 2005
  • Association of Cable Communicators'(ACC) President's Award, 1997
  • PROMAX Brand Builder Award, 2004
  • T. Howard Foundation's Executive Leadership Award, 2009
  • Paley Prize for Innovation and Excellence, 2012
  • Vanity Fair: New Establishment Issue
  • Vanity Fair: The Impresarios of Cable’s Golden Age, 2013
  • Multichannel News Executive of the Year, 2013
  • Media Institute’s Freedom of Speech Award
  • Cable Positive, Joel A. Berger Award, 2009


  1. ^ a b "Joshua W. Sapan". "Bloomberg Businessweek".
  2. ^ "Q&A with Josh Sapan". "C-SPAN".
  3. ^ "Josh Sapan".
  4. ^ "Frequent Flier – A Bolt From the Blue (the Bad Kind)" by Josh Sapan (New York Times, Jul. 2005) "I told my wife. She thought I was talking about some big breakthrough in our business discussions. What brand of hyperbole is this? she asked. I'm Jewish and she's Episcopalian, and I guess that response comes with the territory."
  5. ^ "Thank You". 2 November 2015. Retrieved 22 September 2018.
  6. ^ "Josh Sapan Provides His Big Picture of America - Jewish Business News". Jewish Business News. 2013-12-12. Retrieved 2018-10-24.
  7. ^ "Lightning Strikes". The New Yorker. Retrieved 2018-10-24.
  8. ^ "Lightning Strikes". The New Yorker. Retrieved 2018-10-24.
  9. ^ "From Mad Town to 'Mad Men' | College of Letters & Science, University of Wisconsin-Madison". Retrieved 2018-10-24.
  10. ^ "A 'Versatile Mind' Broadens AMC". Multichannel. Retrieved 2018-10-24.
  11. ^ "GREAT NECK BOY FINDS GOLD AT END OF RAINBOW". NY Daily News. Retrieved 2018-11-09.
  12. ^ "NBC to Buy Bravo". Multichannel. Retrieved 2018-11-11.
  13. ^ "Statement from Rainbow Media President and CEO Joshua Sapan on The IFC Center Opening". 2005-06-16. Retrieved 2018-11-15.
  14. ^ "Cablevision's Rainbow Media Holdings to Acquire Sundance Channel". Retrieved 2018-11-30.
  15. ^ Team, The Deadline (2011-03-10). "Rainbow Media To Become AMC Networks After Spinoff, With Sapan As Boss". Deadline. Retrieved 2018-12-03.
  16. ^ Retrieved 2018-12-07. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  17. ^ The Big Picture: America in Panorama (2013), Princeton Architectural Press. ISBN 978-1-61689-165-7.
  18. ^ "AMC Networks CEO Roasted With Jokes About AMC, Netflix, Occupy Wall Street, Casey Anthony". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2018-10-01.

External links[edit]