We all knew something was going on when @BravoAndy suddenly changed his twitter handle to @Andy. Well now we know. Andy is no longer in charge of Development at Bravo. But fear not. He is merely inching toward the door at this point. He has a new multi-year contract to produce the Housewives franchises through his new production company, Most Talkative. In addition, WWHL has been renewed for two more seasons.
From Zap2it : “Andy has influenced the course and the shape of Bravo tremendously over the past 10 years as a production and development executive, and as creator and host of our flagship late-night show, becoming the face of the network,” says Frances Berwick, president of Bravo and Oxygen Media. “We are excited to retain him as a creative force with this new deal, which will also allow him to take ‘Watch What Happens Live’ and its irreverent, brand-defining humor to the next level.”
So, do you think Andy is seeing the Housewives running their course and starting to plan for other ventures? What does it all mean?
Here is the complete press release on the shakeup, from Bravo….
NEW YORK – November 13, 2013 – Bravo Media announced today that the Clubhouse will be open for business for the next two years with host Andy Cohen at the helm of the buzziest, most interactive and only live talk show in late night, “Watch What Happens Live.” Additionally, Cohen also inked a first-look, multi-year development deal with the network as he launches his new production company, Most Talkative, the same name as his recent best-selling autobiography. This marks the first deal of this kind for Bravo. Cohen, an Emmy Award-winning Producer, will depart the network as an executive, but will continue as Executive Producer of Bravo’s successful “Housewives” franchise and serve as host for reunions and specials.
“Andy has influenced the course and the shape of Bravo tremendously over the past 10 years as a production and development executive, and as creator and host of our flagship late night show, becoming the face of the network,” said Frances Berwick, President of Bravo and Oxygen Media. “He has created legions of cultural-touchstone programs and left an indelible imprint on the network. We are excited to retain him as a creative force with this new deal, which will also allow him to take ‘Watch What Happens Live’ and its irreverent, brand-defining humor to the next level.”
Cohen will continue to host the network’s iconic reunions and specials which have amassed nearly 80 hours and averaged 1.8 million A18-49 and 2.7 million total viewers since kicking-off in 2006. He will also continue to serve as an executive producer for the entire “The Real Housewives” franchise, which he helped launch in 2005.
“In my 23 years as a television producer, my time at Bravo has been the most rewarding and this next phase of my career is the perfect marriage of everything I love doing — producing and broadcasting,” said Cohen. “Watch What Happens Live’ is the show I have dreamt about hosting all my life – it’s the exact extension of my love for pop culture and fun. I’m thrilled to launch my production company Most Talkative and to continue my role as EP of the ‘Housewives’ – I couldn’t imagine leaving behind women that have become a part of my daily life.”
With Cohen’s departure from his executive duties, Vice President Lara Spotts will assume the role as head of Bravo’s development team. Spotts currently serves as Vice President, Development for Bravo and will now lead the scripted and non-scripted efforts on both the West and East Coast, reporting to Berwick.
“Watch What Happens Live” started in 2007 as an online after show for “Top Chef” and the following year for “Project Runway.” After building a loyal online audience, Bravo strategically premiered the show on-air at midnight one night a week and soon moved to 11PM, two nights a week. The only live interactive late-night talk show was then stripped to five nights-a-week in January 2012, and since then has been averaging 534,000 P18-49 and 942,000 total viewers. Featuring guests from the world of entertainment, politics and pop culture the show has become a destination for major celebrities including Oprah, Lady GaGa, Meryl Streep and Cher.
Cohen started at Bravo in 2004 as Vice President of Original Programming & Development and was upped to Senior Vice President and then Executive Vice President of Original Programming & Development in December, 2010. Since then he has overseen an aggressive slate of unscripted series and specials including hits such as the Peabody Award winning “Project Runway,” Emmy winning “Top Chef,” “Queer Eye,” “Being Bobby Brown” “Kathy Griffin: My Life On the D List,” “The Millionaire Matchmaker,” “Million Dollar Listing,” “The Rachel Zoe Project,” “Work of Art: The Next Great Artist,” “Bethenny Ever After,” “Tabatha’s Salon Takeover,” “Shahs of Sunset,” “Flipping Out,” and the entire “The Real Housewives” franchise.
Cohen received an Emmy award when season six of “Top Chef” won Outstanding Reality Competition Program at the 2010 primetime Emmy awards and has been nominated for 17 additional Emmy Awards as Executive Producer of “Project Greenlight,” “Project Runway,” “Top Chef” and “Queer Eye.” In 2005, Cohen was awarded a Peabody Award for his role as Executive Producer of the TRIO documentary “The N Word” and another in 2008 as an Executive Producer of “Project Runway.” Previously, Cohen was Vice President of Original Programming for TRIO (pop, culture, TV), beginning in July 2000 where he was responsible for developing and supervising all of TRIO’s original productions. Prior to TRIO, Cohen worked at CBS News for ten years.
He has also hosted the CFDA Fashion Awards, interviewed Lady Gaga for the cover of Glamour Magazine, Rihanna live on Facebook, Jerry Seinfeld on AOL.com, and Martha Stewart at the 92nd St YMCA. In June of 2013 Cohen was named to Fast Company’s 100 Most Creative People in Business List. In December of 2012 GQ Magazine named Cohen one of the 25 Best Dressed Men of the Year. In 2011 and 2012, he hosted the “Miss USA” and “Miss Universe” pageants live on NBC. His book, Most Talkative, spent 13 weeks on the New York Times best sellers list.