Exclusive: ‘Idol’ Producer Loses Key Exec

Eugene Young, chief creative officer for FremantleMedia North America, departs. Company cites “creative differences.”

Last Updated: November 6, 2009 @ 11:31 AM

Eugene Young, the chief creative officer at "American Idol" producer FremantleMedia North America, has quietly left the company.

Young had been at the company since 2005, when he was tapped to serve as No. 2 to FMNA chief Cecile Frot-Coutaz. He had been in charge of all development and programming at the company.

A spokesman for the company confirmed Young’s departure and issued the following statement:

"Due to creative differences, Eugene Young has decided to leave his post as chief creative officer of FremantleMedia North America," he said. "A valued member of our creative staff for nearly four years, Mr. Young is moving on to pursue other opportunities. We thank him for his many contributions during a very important time for the company, and wish him the best in all future endeavors."

Before joining FMNA, Young was senior VP at Endemol USA, where he worked on series such as "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" and "Fear Factor."

There’s no word yet on a replacement for Young, who was traveling Thursday and couldn’t immediately be reached for comment.

Young’s departure won’t have much impact on "Idol": Frot-Coutaz, an executive producer on the Fox megahit, will continue to manage FMNA’s interest in the show, as she always has.