Amazon Studios Head of Unscripted Development CJ Yu Exits Company

The executive was part of the global formats team and first joined the company in 2017

Amazon Studios logo
Amazon Studios logo (Photo Credit: Amazon)

CJ Yu, Amazon Studios head of unscripted development for its global formats division, has exited the company, an insider familiar with the matter confirmed to TheWrap.

Yu originally joined the company in 2017. He was initially hired as a senior creative development and programming executive and was later promoted to become head of unscripted development in Latin America in 2018. He was then promoted into the global formats role in 2019 where he stayed until his recent departure from the company.

During his tenure, he was responsible for the international rollouts of projects such as “All Or Nothing,” “LOL: Last One Laughing” and “Wild and Free.” Under his leadership, the company built from the ground up a slate of local original content across Europe, Latin America and Asia Pacific. Yu also led the team that oversaw unscripted slates for newer territories for the company, including Australia and Canada.

Formerly, Yu served as vice president of digital programming at Talpa Media. He also served in various development and executive roles at Endemol USA, Mark Burnett Productions, Warner Brothers Television and E! Entertainment.

Amazon has previously indicated that it wants to invest more into original, globally-focused content. In July, Amazon Studios television head Vernon Sanders said, “When we have content that really engages and causes people to sign up for the service all around the world, and when that content actually delivers on all the creative ambition that we want, that’s when we’re actually ticking off all the boxes.” 

At the time Sanders pointed to scripted series such as “Jack Ryan,” “Citadel” and “Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power” as well as the upcoming “Mr. and Mrs. Smith” and “Fallout” as shows that examplify “the strategy we need to deliver for the service.” But it’s unclear if the unscripted division of the company has made as much of an international impact as its scripted side.


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