How George Cheeks Helps CBS Rid Itself of Les Moonves’ Shadow

Ianniello did yeoman’s work after Moonves’ ugly exit, but new boss offers a fresh face for ViacomCBS

To finally free itself of Les Moonves’ shadow, ViacomCBS needed to bring in some fresh blood. And in George Cheeks, who was named CEO of CBS on Friday, they found it in Viacom’s past.

A year and a half after Moonves was forced to resign from CBS, which he led for the better part of two decades, Cheeks offers CBS a chance to completely distance itself from its former CEO and the cultural problems that persisted during, and after, his reign. “NCIS: New Orleans” showrunner Brad Kern was fired by CBS TV Studios shortly after Ianniello took over, following a third misconduct investigation; a few months later, executive producer Adam Targum was also let go after an HR complaint and investigation.

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Tim Baysinger

Tim Baysinger

TV Reporter • • Twitter: @tim_bays