Evan Shapiro promoted to President, IFC tv and Sundance Channel
Laura Michalchyshyn and Jennifer Caserta named General Managers
NEW YORK, N.Y. – June 19, 2008 – Rainbow Media today announced a new senior management team for Sundance Channel and IFC tv, which follows the company’s recent completion of the acquisition of Sundance Channel.
Evan Shapiro, currently Executive Vice President and General Manager of IFC tv, has been named President, IFC tv and Sundance Channel and will oversee both networks. Laura Michalchyshyn, formerly Sundance Channel’s Executive Vice President and General Manager, Programming and Creative Affairs has been named Executive Vice President and General Manager of Sundance Channel.
Jennifer Caserta, formerly IFC tv’s Executive Vice President of Marketing, Scheduling and Alternative Platforms has been named Executive Vice President and General Manager of IFC tv. Michalchyshyn and Caserta will both report to Shapiro. Shapiro will continue to report to Ed Carroll, President, Rainbow National Entertainment Services.
The new team will be responsible for strategically integrating Sundance Channel into Rainbow Media’s existing portfolio of entertainment brands, while harnessing the company’s resources and proven programming expertise to position each network for continued growth and to further strengthen each network’s distinct brand.
"This structure will allow Rainbow to expand its leadership position in the world of independent film while keeping absolutely distinct the brand personalities and programming mandates of these two networks," stated Carroll.
"At the helm of IFC, Evan has demonstrated strong leadership, programming, and branding skills and will bring that expertise to his new role leading both Sundance Channel and IFC tv. Among his priorities will be to keep these brands clearly differentiated as they continue to pursue separate destinies."
Added Carroll: "Laura Michalchyshyn has deep roots within Sundance Channel and a real understanding of the brand. She has also demonstrated keen programming instincts in creating some of Sundance Channel’s most successful original series. Jen Caserta has been integral in making the IFC brand synonymous with edgy, thought-provoking entertainment on platforms ranging from television to VOD to broadband."
Evan Shapiro was named Executive Vice President and General Manager of The Independent Film Channel (IFC tv) in January 2005. In this role, he oversaw the day-to-day operations of the network and directed all efforts as it related to program development, production, scheduling, marketing, and sponsorship. During Shapiro’s tenure at IFC tv, the network produced a number of thought-provoking and acclaimed original documentaries and specials, including This Film Is Not Yet Rated, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in 2006 and prompted the MPAA to discuss making changes to its film ratings process. In 2005, the network unveiled the innovative web/TV integrated user-generated content initiative for filmmakers, IFC Media Lab.
Under Shapiro’s leadership, IFC tv’s original programming slate has significantly expanded to include IFC original series, including "The Whitest Kids U’ Know" and the upcoming "Z Rock." Shapiro joined IFC in 2004 as senior vice president of marketing. Prior to joining IFC, he was senior vice president of marketing for Court TV, where his campaigns for "Forensic Files" garnered several top awards. In 1996, Shapiro formed a marketing agency called FourFront, which he ran until joining Court TV. With clients such as HBO, Court TV, A&E, Microsoft and Universal Pictures, he developed marketing campaigns, events and guerrilla strategies for some of the world’s top brands.
As Executive Vice President & General Manager, Programming and Creative Affairs for Sundance Channel, Laura Michalchyshyn was responsible for all creative expressions of the Sundance Channel brand, both on and off-air, including original programming, film and documentary acquisition, program planning, on-air promotion and the creative strategy of all channel branding. She supervised the production of original programs such as "Big Ideas for a Small Planet," "Iconoclasts," "TransGeneration," "Nimrod Nation," "Sin City Law," and "Live from Abbey Road," as well as numerous documentary features. She was also responsible for the acquisition of television series including "Slings & Arrows," "City of Men," "Signé Chanel," "Kath & Kim," and "Terminal City," and films such as Leonard Cohen: I’m Your Man, Darwin’s Nightmare, 40 Shades of Blue, Marc Jacobs & Louis Vuitton and The Corporation. Under her direction the network has launched new destinations such as "Asia Extreme," "Hangover Theater," "Sonic Screen," and "THE GREEN."
Prior to Sundance Channel, Michalchyshyn served for over seven years as Senior Vice President, Dramatic Programming for Alliance Atlantis, where she achieved international recognition and acclaim for her programming and film production contributions. In 1995, Michalchyshyn was part of the management team that launched the first Canadian women’s cable channel, WTN, where she worked as Program Manager responsible for scheduling and acquiring movies, series and documentaries. For three years at WTN she also produced an ongoing half-hour short film series which launched the careers of many emerging Canadian filmmakers.
As Executive Vice President of Marketing, Communications, Scheduling, and Alternative Programming for IFC tv, Jennifer Caserta has been managing the network’s marketing, branding, events, and online and on-demand programming efforts, as well the development of new business opportunities. Caserta directed some of IFC tv’s most innovative multi-platform marketing, communication and programming initiatives, including the recent re-launch of IFC.com. She served as executive producer on the IFC series "The Whitest Kids U’ Know," and on the IFC.com shows "Lunchbox," "Good Morning Internet," "Get Hit," and "The Mary Van Note Show."
Prior to this, Caserta was Executive Vice President and General Manager of the music network fuse and served as Vice President of Ad Sales Marketing for Court TV. She began her cable career at The Food Network in consumer and ad sales marketing and was Director of Marketing at Oxygen, where she launched the advertising sales marketing team. She has won a number of industry awards for her work at Court TV and IFC, including Promax/BDA, Reggies, and Mark Awards.
About Rainbow Media Holdings LLC
Rainbow Media Holdings LLC is a subsidiary of Cablevision Systems Corporation (NYSE: CVC). Rainbow Media is a leading producer of targeted, multi-platform content for global distribution, creating and managing some of the world’s most compelling and dynamic entertainment brands, including AMC, IFC, WE tv, Sundance Channel, LIFESKOOL, SPORTSKOOL, and VOOM HD Networks. Through IFC Entertainment, Rainbow Media also owns and manages the following: IFC Films, a leading distribution company for independent film; IFC Productions, a feature film production company that provides financing for select independent film projects; and IFC Center, a three screen, state-of-the-art cinema in the heart of New York’s Greenwich Village. Rainbow Media also operates Rainbow Advertising Sales Corporation, its advertising sales company; Rainbow Network Communications, its full service network programming origination and distribution company; and 11 Penn TV, a company that manages Rainbow Media’s NYC studios and post-production facilities.