Kevin Reilly (executive)

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Kevin Reilly is an American media executive who serves as the president of TBS and TNT and as and Chief Creative Officer for Turner Entertainment, where his duties include overseeing the company's Super Deluxe and ELEAGUE properties.

He has championed such successful programs as Empire, The Office, 30 Rock, Friday Night Lights, The Shield, ER, Law & Order and Glee, among others.

Early life[edit]

Reilly was born in Manhasset, New York and earned his undergraduate degree from Cornell University.[citation needed]

Professional background[edit]


Reilly served as President of Entertainment for FX. In that role, Reilly helped redefine the basic cable business with an aggressive slate of original quality programming including The Shield, Nip/Tuck, and Rescue Me. Within a year of his arrival, FX made cable history with its seminal series, The Shield, which broke cable ratings records when it premiered and went on to receive a Golden Globe Award for Best Drama Series (2002) and an Emmy Award for lead actor Michael Chiklis (2002).[1]


After leaving his role at FX, Reilly first served as NBC's President, Primetime Development in fall 2003. He became President of the network in May 2004 and served until May 2007. He began his career at NBC Entertainment almost two decades earlier. Early in his career at NBC, Reilly supervised Law & Order in its first season and developed ER. After his first stint at NBC, Reilly was President of Brad Grey Television, the television production arm of Brillstein-Grey Entertainment. He joined Brillstein-Grey in 1994. He was responsible for shepherding some of television’s top shows, such as the pilot for The Sopranos, and the NBC comedies Just Shoot Me! and NewsRadio.

His vocal support of The Office helped it survive its low-rated first season.[2] Reilly has been credited with developing shows such as My Name Is Earl, Heroes, 30 Rock, and Friday Night Lights.[3] Despite having received a new three-year contract at NBC in February 2007, Reilly's partnership with NBC was terminated in late May 2007, and Reilly departed soon after.[4] Approximately one month later, Reilly was hired as President of Entertainment at FOX.


At Fox, Reilly supervised and introduced several successful and critically celebrated TV series. Reilly introduced the drama Sleepy Hollow and Golden Globe Award winner Brooklyn Nine-Nine, as well as The Following, the highest-rated broadcast drama of the 2012-13 season[5] and The Mindy Project, the #1 new comedy of 2012-13 to be picked up for a second season.

Prior to leaving FOX, Reilly greenlit Gotham and Empire, two of the 2014-15 season's most popular new series. Reilly also championed New Girl, the network’s highest-rated fall sitcom debut in 10 years,.[6] He launched Glee, which won the Golden Globe for Best Series – Musical or Comedy[7] in 2010.

He is generally credited with creating Jane Lynch’s character, Sue Sylvester, on the show.[8] Reilly developed and launched Seth MacFarlane's The Cleveland Show and the J.J. Abrams thriller Fringe at Fox.

Reilly also bolstered Fox’s leadership and investment in digital and social media. He was the architect behind the Animation Domination High-Def,[9] an independent digital animation studio generating alternative animation for digital channels and a late-night block on FOX.[10]

Reilly championed a "no pilot season" strategy (designed to nurture fewer new FOX shows with more investment), during which he was responsible for greenlighting hit shows Gotham, The Last Man on Earth, and Empire.[11][12][13] He left Fox in May 2014.[14]

Turner Broadcasting[edit]

Reilly is currently President of TBS and TNT and Chief Creative Officer for Turner Entertainment Networks, and oversees Turner ventures Super Deluxe[15] and ELEAGUE.[16] His role was announced[17] by Turner President David Levy on November 4, 2014.

As Chief Creative Officer, he chairs the Turner Entertainment Programming Council, a coordinated effort engaging the senior programming executives of TNT, TBS, Adult Swim and truTV to explore and develop cross-platform opportunities.[18]

In 2016, TNT cut by 50% the ad load of the network's new dramas, starting with its hit, Animal Kingdom.[19] Reilly has also gained notice for modernizing and reinventing the types of series seen on TNT and TBS, introducing dark original dramas at TBS, including Animal Kingdom and Good Behavior, and edgy comedies at TBS, including Full Frontal with Samantha Bee, The Detour, Angie Tribeca, Wrecked, and People of Earth.[19] By investing heavily in new, original programming and attracting big-name talent to both networks, Reilly has been credited with what The New York Times called “leading TBS and TNT into the fray of great TV.”[20]

Reilly also sits on the Board of Directors of Mashable.[21] In 2016, he was inducted into the Broadcasting and Cable Hall of Fame.[22]


  1. ^ Jack Myers. "Kevin Reilly: Bringing Must-See TV Back to NBC". Today's Commentary. Archived from the original on 2007-05-01. Retrieved 2007-05-31. 
  2. ^ John Consoli. "Analysis: Is Reilly a Scapegoat for NBC's Failures?". network tv/syndication, Mediaweek (May 28, 2007). Archived from the original on 2007-10-08. Retrieved 2007-06-01. 
  3. ^ Ed Martin. "Kevin Reilly Revived Must-See TV at NBC". Ed Martin's Watercooler TV, (May 30, 2007). Archived from the original on 2007-07-02. Retrieved 2007-06-01. 
  4. ^ "Reilly Expected To Lose Job At NBC". Entertainment, CBS News (May 28, 2007). Retrieved 2007-05-31. [dead link]
  5. ^ Patten, Dominic. "Full 2012-2013 TV Season Series Rankings". Retrieved May 23, 2013. 
  6. ^ James Hibberd. "Zooey Deschanel's 'New Girl' opens big". Entertainment Weekly (Sep 21, 2011). Retrieved 2012-01-12. 
  7. ^ John Consoli. "Fox Tops 2009-10 Ratings; CBS Wins Viewers". The Wrap (May 27, 2010). Retrieved 2010-08-31. 
  8. ^ Greg Hernandez. "Glee creator Ryan Murphy says Sue Sylvester character was not in original script of hit Fox show". Greg In Hollywood. Retrieved 2010-08-31. 
  9. ^ Young, Susan. "Reilly: Nurturing Fox's Next-Gen Toon Stars". Variety. Retrieved Dec 1, 2012. 
  10. ^ Crupi, Anthony. "Fox Inks Partnership With YouTube's WIGS Channel". Adweek. Retrieved Feb 19, 2013. 
  11. ^ James Hibberd (January 17, 2015). "Fox renews 'Gotham,' 'Empire' (after only two episodes!)". Entertainment Weekly. 
  12. ^ Lesley Goldberg (February 12, 2014). "Will Forte Comedy 'Last Man on Earth' Nabs Fox Series Order". The Hollywood Reporter. 
  13. ^ Josef Adalian (May 6, 2014). "Why Fox's Kevin Reilly Is Canceling Pilot Season". Vulture. 
  14. ^ Greenwald, Andy (May 30, 2014). "Kevin Reilly Is Out at Fox. So What Now? (For Him, the Network, and the Future of Broadcast TV)". 
  15. ^ Spangler, Todd. "Turner's Super Deluxe Developing Edgy TV Comedies with Stephen Gaghan, Other Partners". Variety. Retrieved 16 August 2016. 
  16. ^ Lewsi, Richard. "Turner set to unveil televised esports league featuring CS:GO". Daily Dot. Retrieved 16 August 2016. 
  17. ^ PR, Turner. "Kevin Reilly joins Turner Broadcasting". Turner Broadcasting. Retrieved November 4, 2014. 
  18. ^ Birnbaum, Deborah. "Turner's Kevin Reilly Talks Reduced Ad Load, Samantha Bee's Success". Variety. Retrieved 16 August 2016. 
  19. ^ a b "How Turner is changing the program to keep up with a new TV era". Los Angeles Times. 2016-09-09. Retrieved 2016-11-02. 
  20. ^ [1] Koblin, John. "Leading TBS and TNT Into the Fray of Great TV." The New York Times, May 16, 2017.
  21. ^ Shields, Mike. "Turner leads $15 million investment in Mashable". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 16 August 2016. 
  22. ^ "B&C Hall of Fame Class of 2016 Set | Broadcasting & Cable". 2016-04-08. Retrieved 2016-11-02. 

External links[edit]

Business positions
Preceded by
Jeff Zucker
President of NBC Entertainment
Succeeded by
Ben Silverman
Preceded by
Peter Liguori
President of FOX Entertainment
Succeeded by
Peter Rice
Preceded by
Peter Rice
Chairman of FOX Entertainment
Succeeded by
Peter Rice
Preceded by
Steve Koonin
President of TBS and TNT
Succeeded by