Wednesday, January 13, 2021

ViacomCBS Consolidates Nickelodeon, Awesomeness Live-Action Production

Nickelodeon's Shauna Phelan and Zack Olin to oversee live-action for both brands as Awesomeness’ Shelley Zimmerman exits

ViacomCBS’s Kids & Family division is consolidating all of its live-action production under one team, the company announced on Tuesday, January 12.

The team, led by Nickelodeon executives Shauna Phelan and Zack Olin, will oversee development, current series and studio content for both the Nickelodeon and Awesomeness brands. Syrinthia Studer will continue in her role overseeing the combined live-action film studio. All three report to ViacomCBS Kids & Family president Brian Robbins.

The move to streamline the division’s live-action operations comes as Shelley Zimmerman, executive vice president of live-action studios for Awesomeness, has opted not to renew her contract and step down from her position and exit the company after nearly six years.

The move brings Phelan back into the Awesomeness realm, having joined Nickelodeon’s as senior vice president of live-action scripted content from Awesomeness in late 2018. Olin joined her in late 2020.

Current live-action series at Nick include the All That revival, the Henry Danger spinoff Danger Force and Tyler Perry’s Young Dylan, among others. Recent live-action series from Awesomeness include PEN15 and Light as a Feather at Hulu and the two-season drama Trinkets at Netflix.

“As our content grows in demand from both our own audiences and from third-party platforms, consolidating all scripted live-action under Shauna and Zack streamlines our process to make the biggest creative impact possible,” Robbins said in a statement. “Syrinthia, Shauna and Zack are a formidable team of terrific storytellers, and they’re delivering an exciting slate of films and series that have been tailored to the full expanse of demos we serve, from kids to Gen Z.”

He continued, “Shelley and I have worked together throughout the years, and she is an incredibly talented and savvy creative executive. We wish her the absolute best and are so grateful for her leadership and contributions to Awesomeness’s studio success with hits like To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before, PEN15 and Trinkets.”

Originally published: Wednesday, January 13, 2021.

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