Fox entertainment chief Kevin Reilly stepping down this summer

By Daniel S Levine,

Kevin Reilly, the chairman of Fox’s entertainment division, is stepping down, the network said on Thursday. He will be leaving by the end of June.

21st Century Fox did not name a successor, so Reilly’s senior executive team will report to Peter Rice, Chairman and CEO of Fox Networks Group, until one is found.

“21st Century Fox is a great company that has provided me with choice seats at the head table of pop culture over two very rewarding stints both at FBC and FX, and I am grateful to have benefited from the leadership of Peter Rice, Chase Carey and Rupert Murdoch,” Reilly said in a statement.

Reilly noted that he has been talking about leaving with Rice for “a while,” adding that the upcoming Fall 2014 lineup made him confident enough to decide that the time was right to do so.

“Kevin’s undeniable creative gift and passion for talent have left an indelible mark on our company,” Rice said, noting Reilly’s long list of achievements.

Reilly, who has been tapped to join the Broadcasting & Cable Hall of Fame in October, first gained attention in Hollywood as the President of Brad Grey Television, overseeing The Sopranos. Then, he moved to FX, overseeing the success of Nip/Tuck and The Shield.

His first job at one of the main broadcast networks came at NBC, where he oversaw The Office, The biggest Loser, Heroes, Friday Night Lights and 30 Rock. In 2007, he rejoined the Fox family when Fox hired him.

Recent hits for the network include New Girl, Sleepy Hollow, Glee and The Mindy Project. He has also tried to redefine the way broadcast TV picks its projects, famously saying in January that the pilot season system doesn’t work. In fact, in his resignation letter, posted at TheWrap, Reilly wrote, “Don't go back to pilot season!”

The Fall 2014 schedule will include the new Gotham and the return of Brooklyn Nine-Nine.

image courtesy of Scott Kirkland/INFphoto.com

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