Sharon Levy has been elevated to chief executive officer of Endemol Shine North America, the Banijay-owned studio behind the Emmy Award-nominated “LEGO Masters,” “MasterChef,” “Wipeout” and upcoming Showtime series “Ripley,” starring Andrew Scott.
The announcement was made on Thursday by Ben Samek, CEO of Banijay Americas, as Endemol shifts from being a holding company to an independent production studio alongside the nine other Banijay-owned studios.
In her new role, Levy, who previously served as chief content officer since 2021, will manage all aspects of the business and its growth. She will also continue to lead all of the studio’s unscripted and scripted programming efforts from the company’s North Hollywood headquarters.
“Sharon is one of the most strategic executives in the business, someone whose creative vision is matched only by her market savvy,” Samek said in a statement. “Over the past five years, she has already positioned Endemol Shine North America as a major industry player and unleashed the creativity of her group. I look forward to supporting her as she leads her talented team to new heights.”
Levy added, “I’m very excited to take on the CEO role for the new Endemol Shine North America as we chart its course forward during an extraordinary time for the industry. I am thankful to Ben for believing in me and my exceptional team and giving us the responsibility and opportunity to redefine ESNA. With Endemol Shine North America now operating solely as a production studio, we’ll move more nimbly and be better positioned to meet the challenges of the moment. It’s a new era at ESNA, and we look forward to working with partners, old and new, to create great television.”
In announcing the promotion and company’s strategy shift, his first since being named CEO, Samek completes the restructure of Banijay’s businesses across the Americas, establishing the new Endemol Shine North America studio alongside fellow U.S.-based Bunim/Murray Productions, Truly Original, 51 Minds Entertainment, Authentic Entertainment and Stephen David Entertainment; Mexico-based Endemol Shine Boomdog and Banijay Mexico and U.S. Hispanic; and Brazil-based Endemol Shine Brasil and A Fábrica.
“Historically, Endemol Shine North America served a dual role as the parent company to our subsidiaries and as its own production label,” Samek said. “Reconstituting ESNA as a pure production studio that lives alongside the nine other studios that form Banijay Americas, each with its own leadership and goals, will afford us the opportunity to work more collaboratively and efficiently and represent ourselves more clearly to our industry partners.”
Since joining Endemol Shine North America in 2017 as president of unscripted and scripted TV, Levy has reconfigured the studio’s Los Angeles-based programming team to work more closely with Banijay’s myriad global production companies and created an original development slate that features projects from co-owned labels worldwide with marquis talent highlighted by Will Arnett, John Cena, Nicole Byer, Keke Palmer, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, John Cusack, Steve Zaillian, Gillian Flynn and more.
Prior to joining Endemol Shine, Levy served as executive vice president of original series for Spike TV, where she oversaw the acquisition, creation and production of unscripted series, scripted series and documentaries, transforming the network’s brand identity with hits like “Ink Master,” “Bar Rescue,” “Auction Hunters” and “Deadliest Warrior.”
Last year, Levy helped spearhead a new partnership between Endemol Shine North America and EveryWoman Studios to expand the Propelle Program, an initiative designed to give rising female creators more opportunities in unscripted TV.