ABC Signature Names Susan Lewis Head of Drama Development

Former Starz exec is replacing Patrick Maguire at the recently restructured studio

Susan Lewis
Courtesy of Susan Lewis

ABC Signature has hired Starz programming exec Susan Lewis as SVP and head of drama development, replacing Patrick Maguire at the recently restructured studio.

In her new role, Lewis will head the label’s drama team and report to Tracy Underwood, EVP of creative affairs for ABC Signature, beginning Aug. 31. The studio, led by president Jonnie Davis, is the result of a merger between ABC Studios and ABC Signature, as part of an overall restructuring and re-naming at Disney Television Studios earlier this month.

Former drama head Maguire, who has been with the company for almost two decades, is leaving to pursue other opportunities.

“I feel very lucky to be joining the incredibly talented team at ABC Signature,” Lewis said. “The breadth of projects that they have brought to audiences is unparalleled, and I am excited to be at a company that is doing everything possible to tell stories about people that have not been told before.”

Underwood added: “We’re thrilled to welcome Susan to ABC Signature. I have long admired her impeccable taste and collaborative spirit. Her thoughtful shepherding of distinctive series like ‘P-Valley’ in concert with her unflappable leadership style made her an undeniable choice for us to spearhead drama and be a vital decision maker for our studio.”

Lewis was most recently SVP of original programming at Starz, a position she’s held since 2017, overseeing series like “Dublin Murders,” based on Tana French’s bestselling thriller novels “Dublin Murder Squad,” “Hightown,” created and executive produced by Rebecca Cutter and Jerry Bruckheimer, and new drama “P-Valley,” created and executive produced by Katori Hall.

Before her tenure at Starz, Lewis was a producer for AK Worldwide, overseeing all creative development and production for Alicia Keys’ production company in digital, film, television, theater and publishing. Among other projects, she worked on the unscripted series “Hustle” for Viceland, and executive produced the films “The Inevitable Defeat of Mister & Pete” and “Pariah,” and the Hallmark/ABC Humanitas television movie “Firelight.”

Prior to that, she was vice president of development at MTV Films, where she acquired the manuscript for Stephenie Meyer’s “Twilight” and oversaw the initial development of the film franchise alongside Paramount executives.

Lewis began her career as a story editor at 3Arts Entertainment. She has a bachelor of arts from the University of Wisconsin, Madison.


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