Jeff Wachtel Out as NBCUniversal International Studios President

Longtime NBCU exec is exiting amid issues about respect in the workplace

Last Updated: October 16, 2020 @ 7:00 AM

Jeff Wachtel has exited NBCUniversal after almost 20 years with the company, most recently serving as president of NBCUniversal International Studios, according to Deadline.

The longtime NBCU exec is leaving amid issues about respect in the workplace and just a few days after the exit of unscripted TV chief Meredith Ahr following an investigation into her and former NBC Entertainment chairman Paul Telegdy’s workplace behavior.

Telegdy and Ahr were both accused by multiple employees of fostering a toxic workplace environment. Telegdy was let go in August amid a larger NBCU shakeup.

In a bombshell report on July 31 by The Hollywood Reporter, Telegdy was accused of numerous transgressions including mocking gay executives to their faces, using homophobic and misogynistic slurs and making disparaging comments about others’ physical appearance. Telegdy and Ahr were both accused of creating a “terrible, even traumatizing experience” in the reality division.

Per Deadline, sources say there were internal complaints about Wachtel’s management behavior, which prompted a conversation between the exec and NBCU leadership about respect in the workplace. It was decided Wachtel would leave the company and a search would begin for his replacement.

Wachtel was appointed president of NBCUniversal International Studios in 2018, moving to London to oversee international production companies like Carnival Films (“Downton Abbey,” “Belgravia”), Monkey (“Made In Chelsea”), and Matchbox Pictures (“Stateless”). He also headed up joint ventures to produce shows like “The Capture,” which launched on NBCU-owned streaming service Peacock this fall.

Previously, Wachtel served as chief content officer of NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment and president of Universal Cable Productions and Wilshire Studios. Before that, the exec was president of original programming and co-president of USA Network, which he first joined in 2001 as EVP of original programming.

Representatives for NBCUniversal did not immediately respond to TheWrap’s request for comment on the news of Wachtel’s exit.